Saudi-Irish Business Council calls on SMEs to explore opportunities


Saudi Gazette

THE Saudi-Irish business council has presented different potential business opportunities for Saudis in Ireland at a meeting Thursday at the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry (JCCI).

Rami Ekram, vice president of the Saudi-Irish Business Council, said that they are hoping to attract many Saudi investors to explore the opportunities available in Ireland and the available methods of business collaboration. He added that they are more interested in young Saudis with innovative ideas who hope to explore opportunities in Ireland. Ekram said the focus is on the health sector, education, power and IT.

The council is planning a visit for Saudi investors, including SMEs representatives, to exchange experiences and explore potential investment opportunities in Ireland. The visit will include investors in different sectors such as investors in education, health and technology and the council will seek to arrange high level meetings.

During discussions, Investors suggested reducing the costs of Irish deals in order to be able to increase collaboration between businesses in Saudi Arabia and Ireland.

Irish companies are also interested to join the Saudi market, elaborated Ekram, particularly in the infrastructure sector.

The Saudi-Irish team is hoping to hold a number of meetings with local investors with a focus on small business who can join the business trips to learn, grow and move to the global market.

"We want them to be part of our success," said Ekram commenting on SMEs participation.

Wissm Saadi, Invest Northern Ireland regional manager for KSA, Egypt, Bahrain, noted that the Irish community is welcoming and shares number of factors with the Saudi culture in terms of family ties.

He added that there are business relations between Saudis and Irish that dates back to 40 years in different sectors and they have built trust over the years.

He added that companies hoping to join the European market can start from Ireland where there are different investment encouragement such as the use of English language and the tax system.

Hashim Al-Awadi, also from the Saudi-Irish Council, noted that they are keen to attract SMEs investors to join their business trips and learn from the Irish companies to get exposed to presentations, sessions and potential joint ventures.

"SMEs is a very huge sector in Ireland, there are plenty of resources and we can learn a lot from them and that gives a potential for growth," added Al-Awadi.