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Netherlands key economic partner for Kuwait in Europe, says Ambassador Marafi

The Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs for Europe praised the depth of Kuwaiti-Dutch ties, particularly in economic and commercial aspects, especially within the energy sector.

Ambassador Sadiq Marafi, the Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs for Europe, praised the depth of Kuwaiti-Dutch relations, particularly in economic and commercial aspects, especially within the energy sector.

In a statement during its participation in the Dutch embassy’s King’s Day celebration, Marafi said, “As the two countries celebrate the 60th anniversary of their diplomatic relations, the Netherlands stands as a significant economic partner for Kuwait in Europe, hosting over 200 Kuwaiti gas stations.”

On the issue of exempting Kuwaitis from the Schengen visa, Marafi stated, “The European Parliament will hold elections next June, and the competent committees will be formed to address recent incidents.” On the other hand, he denied that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is in the process of reducing expenses regarding its embassy in Europe, stating, “There is no current trend towards reduction, but there is an idea for the administration to expand.”

Emphasizing the continuous tours to European countries and meetings with the heads of European diplomatic missions accredited in Kuwait, Marafi confirmed the success of his visit to Turkey, describing the series of incidents he conducted there as “excellent.”

“In 1750, the Netherlands was the most active European trading partner in the Gulf region and with Kuwait, where my predecessors and grandparents first became trading partners,” said His Excellency Laurens Westhoff, Ambassador of the Netherlands to Kuwait.

Kuwait and the Netherlands share many principles, and as relatively small states with big and strong neighbors, our two countries adopt the principle of a rules-based international order. Kuwait and the Netherlands have often stood side by side in promoting and defending the principles of sovereignty, territorial integrity, and the inviolability of internationally recognized borders,” the ambassador added.

The Dutch ambassador stated that during these years, European integration has made the Netherlands a gateway to Europe. Countries such as Kuwait have chosen our country as an entry point to the European Union, a growing market with 450 million customers where goods and services move freely between borders, without paper procedures and tariffs.

“A 60-year celebration of relationships doesn’t merely entail reflecting on the past. Issues like food security and climate change demand new partnerships. Therefore, we collaborate with research institutes such as the Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research, the Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Sciences, and Kuwait University to cultivate new branches for our strong and promising relationship,” Ambassador Westhoff said.

Royal Dutch Navy’s vital role in Kuwait liberation

Also, returning to 1990/1991, Kuwait and the Netherlands stood side by side when the Royal Dutch Navy joined the International Coalition for the Liberation of Kuwait. They contributed four frigates, three mine hunters, and a supply ship operating in the Arabian Gulf. Nearly 2,000 Dutch naval forces participated, one of whom, Lt. Col. Peter de Groot, currently serves as the military attaché at our embassy,” Westhoff added.

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