Visiting King of Spain Juan Carlos met a number of Spanish and Kuwaiti businessmen at Bayan Palace here on Wednesday, in presence of Chairman of Kuwait Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) Ali Thunayan Al-Ghani.
During the meeting, the Spanish king said he was so happy to be here for a two-day visit to Kuwait which comes at a time when both sides are set to mark the 50th anniversary of forging diplomatic relations.
Hailing bilateral political, economic, social and cultural friendship, he said the high-level delegation accompanying him reflected Spain's willingness to promote and develop cooperative relations.
He lauded Kuwait's recent stupendous development under the wise leadership of His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, commending the Gulf country as a model of economic dynamics across the world.
The Kuwaiti government has set out a regulatory framework for achieving economic growth and has exerted a great effort to put its national development plan in place, he said, adding that Spanish companies are willing to join major development projects in Kuwait.
The mutual investment protection and double taxation avoidance agreements signed by both sides have led to the promotion and development of bilateral relations, he said, speaking highly of a memo of understanding singed here on Tuesday in the communication infrastructure field as an additional step in this regard.
The Spanish king urged Kuwaiti companies to seize available investment opportunities in his country.
On his part, Chairman of Kuwait Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) Ali Thunayan Al-Ghani hailed the visit of the Spanish King and his accompanying high-level delegation which comprises senior officials and leading investors and businessmen. He emphasized that Kuwait and Spain should capitalize on distinguished friendly relations to serve the present and future of both countries.
Two-way trade exchange has tripled to USD 610 million, he said, adding that Spain is Kuwait's 16th largest exporter and 23rd importer.
Although this figure seems to be modest, it indicates that there are wide vistas of bilateral cooperation in trade, tourism and investment, contracting, infrastructure and shipbuilding, he pointed out.
Al-Ghanim hoped that Spanish companies would participate in the implementation of joint ventures in Kuwait under the build, operate and transfer (BOT) and private-public partnership (PPP) systems.