SECRETARY BLINKEN: Good afternoon, everyone. It is a great pleasure to welcome Foreign Minister al-Busaidi here to the State Department in Washington and to continue the very good conversations we have had over the past two years on a regular basis, but I am glad that we let’s finally – have the opportunity to do it face to face in Washington.
I am particularly pleased that we have begun our strategic dialogue between Oman and the United States, and that we are focusing on a number of critical issues that I believe will benefit the people of both countries – trade and investment, education and culture, renewable energies. And let me say here that I think the vision the sultan shared to achieve net zero by 2050 is very meaningful and important, and of course, as we head into COP27 this week in Egypt, it couldn’t be more timely.
Oman has been a very important partner for the United States on a variety of issues, including Iran, as well as Yemen and a commitment to trying to end the war in Yemen – one of the areas of immense suffering in recent years, but we are working closely together to try to help end it.
So there’s a lot to say, but I’m especially happy, Badr, that we can do this together here in Washington, and I welcome you.
FOREIGN MINISTER AL-BUSAIDI: Thank you very much, Mr. Secretary. I am truly delighted to be here in Washington to meet you and your distinguished team and together launch this new strategic dialogue between Oman and the United States.
The relationship between our two countries is based on a shared commitment and appreciation of mutual interests and our ability to work together to improve the safety and well-being of our citizens.
This dialogue, I am sure, will elevate the relationship to a new level as we work together to face new challenges as well as be presented with new opportunities in areas such as climate change, such as decarbonization efforts and the development of renewable green energies. I think there is now a lot more room to elaborate more on our collaboration on culture, on education, including science and technology. We have a free trade agreement which I think will expand, I hope, in the years to come. And I would really like to encourage our two private sectors to do more in terms of investment and trade.
I think this is a very valuable opportunity to exchange with you, Mr. Secretary, our views and perspectives on a range of issues, be it Palestine, Yemen or regional security. I think the relationship with the United States is highly valued by my country. We appreciate this friendship which has stood the test of time for nearly 200 years, and I think it’s fair to say that I believe it is bound to grow stronger and deeper in the years to come. .
So really, thank you for your welcome, thank you for your kind words, and I look forward to seeing you in the Sultanate of Oman.
SECRETARY BLINKEN: Thank you very much.
FOREIGN MINISTER AL-BUSAIDI: Thank you.
SECRETARY BLINKEN: Thank you, everyone.