James McCormack, global head of sovereign ratings for Fitch, explained that enthusiasm sometimes wanes for "kick-start reform programs" (such as the Saudi plan to reduce its dependence on oil) when commodity prices move higher: "That is potentially a risk here; it will take continued focus on discipline to maintain many of those initiatives with higher oil prices".
Saudi King Salman is in Russian Federation on a state visit, the first to Moscow by a reigning Saudi monarch.
But oil was front and center.
A plan to list Saudi Aramco in 2018 is on track, senior Saudi officials said in Moscow on Thursday, as Saudi Arabia gears up to sign a string of investment agreements with Russian Federation. They are engaged in an intense battle over who will be the top supplier to China, a major energy importer with an insatiable appetite for crude.
Falih said oil demand was healthy around the world, and there was a steady reduction in global oil inventories.
The agreement has already been extended once to continue through March 2018. That may stretch Aramco's ability to execute the sale before the end of 2018, people familiar with the matter said in September.
The talks took place against a hard political backdrop. The Syrian civil war found the Saudis angry at Moscow over its support for Bashar al-Assad, but the poor showing by the Saudi-backed opposition may have persuaded Riyadh that he has won the battle to retain power.
"It depends on a collective decision and consensus within OPEC, but I think there is no objection against this proposal", Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh told Reuters when asked whether there were talks on deepening or extending the cut.
Putin visited Riyadh in 2007.
Vedomosti newspaper reported that Saudi Arabia's sovereign fund is also eyeing investment into a toll road project in Moscow, which would be the first one for the capital.
Trade volume between the two countries reached 2.8 billion USA dollars a year ago, according to the official Saudi press.
The conference concluded with speeches by the Saudi Minister of Trade, the Saudi and Russian Energy Ministers, and the President of the Russian Direct Fund.
Defense was another topic. It has allocated 191 billion riyals ($51 billion), or 21% of its 2017 budget, to military spending.
Russian Federation has prepared a package of around US$3.5 billion arms sales to Saudi Arabia, which includes several divisions of S-400 anti-aircraft missile systems.
"There is some interest, of course", he said.
Saudi king at airport, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dimitriy Rogozin and Russian Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov welcomed. The latter has become a key player in the region and, while Saudi Arabia's ties with the U.S. remain solid, the new Saudi-Russian entente will be essential in bringing stability to a region in turmoil.
At the same time, Riyadh, in common with Israel, will raise with Moscow its concern that these zones may guarantee a long-term presence for Iranian and Hezbollah troops inside Syria.
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