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Suhel Ajaz Khan named India’s new ambassador to Saudi Arabia

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Indian Foreign Service official of 1997 batch, Dr. Suhel Ajaz Khan who is presently the Ambassador of India to the Republic of Lebanon has been appointed as the next Ambassador of India to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. He will replace Dr. Ausaf Sayeed, a 1989 batch IFS officer. Dr. Khan is expected to take up the assignment shortly.

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India Saudi Arabia Relations 

  • Saudi Arabia which is the largest exporter of crude oil in the world and is the  custodian of two of holiest mosques of Islam, Al Haram in Mecca and Al-Haram or forbidden mosques  in Medina.
  • During the visit of Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh to Saudi Arabia in 2010 elevated the India-Saudi Arabia tie to ‘Strategic Partnership’.
  • During PM M0di visit to Saudi Arabia in 2019 Strategic Partnership Council Agreement was signed, which established a high-level council to steer the Indo-Saudi relationship.
  • Saudi Arabia is India’s fourth largest trading partner after the United States of America, China and the United Arab Emirates.
  • More than 18% of India’s crude oil imports are sourced from Saudi Arabia. During April -December 2022, bilateral trade was valued at US$29.28 billion. During this period, India’s imports from Saudi Arabia were valued at US$22.65 billion and exports to Saudi Arabia were worth US$6.63 billion.
  • There are about 22 lakhs Indians living in Saudi Arabia and they constitute the largest expatriate community in Saudi Arabia.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • Saudi Arabia Capital:Riyadh;
  • Saudi Arabia Currency: Saudi Riyal;
  • Saudi Arabia King: Salman of Saudi Arabia.

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