Pakistan’s highest civilian award Nishan-e- Pakistan will be awarded to Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman on Monday. Pakistan’s President Arif Alvi will be conferring the Saudi prince at his house. The announcement has come after both the countries signed investment deals worth up to $20 billion in different fields of cooperation.
Both Pakistan and Saudi Arabia have agreed upon a total of seven MoUs (Memorandum of understanding). In his first address at Prime Minister house in Islamabad, Saudi crown prince said that there would be more investments in the future as well.
The Saudi Prince who is on a two-day visit to Pakistan is yet to meet Pakistan Army chief General Qamar Bajwa. Also known as MBS, the Saudi crown prince has gone ahead with this Asia tour because of his country’s deteriorating diplomatic stature after journalist Jamal Khashoggi was found dead at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul. The incident further resulted in a diplomatic crisis and the tour aims to mend Saudi Arabia’s diplomatic ties with other countries.
The Saudi royal’s three-country visit (Pakistan, India and China) comes at a time when both India and Pakistan have unsettling relations, especially after Pulwama attack in Jammu and Kashmir. India has requested other countries to boycott Pakistan as it blames the country for conspiring and giving safe havens to terrorists. Iran (Saudi Arabia’s arch rival) has also accused Pakistan of harbouring terrorism. After his two-day stay in Pakistan, the Saudi Prince will travel to India to meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan, followed by his visit to China for two days i.e.Thursday and Friday. China will be the last lap of Saudi crown prince’s Asia tour.