RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s fintech sector was a focus for talks during a visit to the Kingdom by the Lord Mayor of London William Russell.
Russell, who serves as the international ambassador for the UK’s financial and professional services sector, was visiting Saudi Arabia for the first time during his mayoralty.
“British expertise and innovation in sustainable finance can help the Saudi financial services sector to unlock the huge opportunities offered by the green transition,” he said.
During his visit, Russell held talks with business leaders to strengthen areas of cooperation between Saudi Arabia and the UK on financial sector policy, green finance, fintech, and open banking.
The discussions also involved Tadawul, King Abdullah Financial District, the Capital Market Authority, and the Saudi Central Bank.
His visit followed a fintech mission last December, when he headed a virtual fintech business delegation to advance commercial and policy collaboration between the two sides.
In July, he hosted the UK-Saudi Sustainable Investment Forum at London’s Mansion House.
It brought together leading public and private sector figures from both sides to discuss initiatives to achieve a more sustainable and greener economic future.
“It has been a pleasure to be here in Saudi Arabia to witness the country’s burgeoning fintech sector. With the UK being one of the world’s leading fintech hubs, we look forward to working with Saudi Arabia to further explore opportunities to collaborate and progress innovation in the digital space,” said Russell.
“Saudi investment in the UK through sovereign wealth funds has had huge mutual benefits – including urban regeneration in the UK and knowledge transfer to Saudi Arabia. This is a promising start, and there is plenty more scope for further investment.
“As part of the Saudi Vision 2030 to diversify the country’s economy, London’s expertise opens up huge possibilities for closer partnership in services by acting as a key enabler of diversification and a source of funding.
“As we approach the COP26 summit and the launch of the Saudi Green Initiative, the UK is very keen for Saudi Arabia to become an ally in the fight against climate change. Working with the Green Finance Institute, the City of London Corporation will be hosting a Green Horizon Summit at COP26.
“We are delighted to see that Saudi Arabia has committed to a target of having 50 percent of its electricity generated from renewables by 2030.”
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