From 23rd to 27th January, a large delegation of Monegasque entrepreneurs took part in the trade mission hosted by the Monaco Economic Board (MEB) in Riyadh. The excellent welcome and the quality of the contacts made contributed to the success of the trip, which was acclaimed by the participants.
47 companies represented by 62 businessmen and women made up the impressive delegation led by the MEB to the Middle East’s leading economic powerhouse, Saudi Arabia.
The trip had been carefully prepared throughout 2023, firstly with two reconnaissance missions to identify opportunities and meet potential partners, and then shortly before departure, by offering participants intercultural training provided by La Classe, a member of the MEB, to help them adopt the right cultural codes when dealing with local contacts.
The mission took place over three intense and productive days.
The programme began with presentations on the specific features of the business environment in a country that has changed so much in recent years. Testimonials from Monaco-based companies with operations in Saudi Arabia or already working in the country rounded off this highly instructive overview.
This was followed by important meetings with potential institutional partners at the prestigious Ministry of Investment.
This was followed by important meetings with potential institutional partners at the prestigious Ministry of Investment. These exchanges were rounded off by a premium reception at the Saudi Arabian Chamber of Commerce in Riyadh.
As strong personal relationships are essential for business in this Mediterranean country, the programme was systematically rounded off with a gastronomic and cultural component, providing opportunities to meet and exchange ideas with potential customers. So it was at the sumptuous Beefbar Monaco in Riyadh that the first day ended, in an establishment that proudly displays the Principality’s art of living.
On the second day, it was in the desert, in a Bedouin camp and as part of an extraordinary traditional welcome, that the Monegasque entrepreneurs were able to exchange ideas with Saudi business personalities. This was yet another opportunity to experience the legendary hospitality of the Saudis, who were very curious to get to know this Principality, which was coming to them for the first time.
This hospitality was renewed on the final day when a couple of Monegasque residents with links to the highest nobility in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia decided to invite the entire delegation, as well as a number of foreign ambassadors, to a garden party that will remain unforgettable.
To conclude the trip, a visit to the at-Turaif District in ad-Dir’iyah served as the starting point for a discovery of the huge project to rebuild and extend the centre of Riyadh from this site, classified as a world heritage site by UNESCO in 2010. It’s an extraordinary project, just like all the others detailed to members during the three-day visit, which have already become the hallmark of a country with immense ambitions.
After a final visit to the Riyadh e-prix just before departure, the many companies in the delegation expressed their satisfaction with the content and relevance of this mission, a first commercial step in one of the world’s most promising young countries, which is still relatively unknown.
As usual, this trip was also an opportunity for Monegasque companies to forge closer links, discover synergies and even enter into commercial agreements with each other, which is another of the Monaco Economic Board’s missions. Given the number and strength of the links forged over the three days, this objective seems to have been achieved beyond all expectations.
Source: Monaco Economic Board