July 4, 2018 / 12:29 PM / 16 days ago

Saudi Arabia offers Comoros $22 million to finance water, road projects

MORONI (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia has signed agreements with Comoros worth $22 million to help finance water and road infrastructure in the poor Indian Ocean island nation, as Riyadh seeks to expand its network of allies against its Gulf rivals.

The agreements were signed during a meeting in the Comoros capital Moroni on Tuesday between the Saudi interior minister, Prince Abdulaziz bin Saud bin Nayef and his host President Azali Assoumani, Comoros officials said.

“The Saudi minister is here with a message from (King Salman),” the president’s adviser on the Arab world, Yahya Mohamed Ilyasa, told reporters.

“Saudi Arabia is ready to support Comorians in their push to have an emerging country by 2030,” he said.

Comoros cut diplomatic ties with Saudi Arabia’s arch foe Iran in 2016 and with its other regional rival Qatar in June 2017.

Reporting by Ahmed Ali Amir; Writing by Elias Biryabarema; Editing by Gareth Jones

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