Yemen Hopes for Resumption of Saudi Aid
Yemen will seek next week a resumption of aid from Saudi Arabia, cut off in 1990 after Yemen supported Iraq's invasion of Kuwait, a Yemeni weekly newspaper reported Friday.
Aid talks will be held on Monday in Saudi Arabia, when the Saudi-Yemeni Coordination Council meets for the first time since 1989, the weekly, September 26, quoted a Yemeni official as saying.
"The council will study the renewal of Saudi financial aid to Yemen's budget," said Hisham Sharif, the Yemeni under-secretary of planning and development, in an interview with the paper.
Sharif said "100 million dollars per year" in Saudi aid to Yemen was lost in 1990.
Relations further deteriorated when Saudi Arabia deported thousands of Yemeni workers to punish Yemen even more for its support of Iraq.
Considered one of the world's poorest countries, Yemen had relied heavily on Saudi aid before Baghdad's occupation of Kuwait.
Since 1995, relations have gradually improved between Yemen and Saudi Arabia. The reconciliation was cemented in June when two countries signed a treaty, ending a long-simmering border dispute between the countries.
Sharif said the coordination council will also discuss establishing a better framework for Yemenis to work in Saudi Arabia, as well as various development projects financed by the Saudis.
These projects include a new airport for Sanaa, an electricity network for all of Yemen, the construction of energy plants and the building of highways linking Sanaa to Aden and Aden to Hadramut.
"The two parties will examine nine projects of bilateral agreement concerning investments, the levying of taxes, customs cooperation, economic exchanges and aerial and ground transport routes," said Sharif -- SANAA (AFP)
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