Weeks after pulling out of Saudi investment forum, top companies return

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The chief executives of ABB (ABBN.S) and Siemens (SIEGn.DE) are traveling to Saudi Arabia to attend a supplier conference, just weeks after they pulled out of FII forum in the kingdom following the death of a journalist.

ABB CEO Ulrich Spiesshofer and Joe Kaeser from Siemens will travel to Dammam for an event organized by Saudi Aramco IPO-ARMO.SE called In-Kingdom Total Value Add. (IKTVA)


The pair had been among the executives who boycotted an earlier investment conference following the killing of Jamal Khashoggi.

During his trip Spiesshofer will visit an ABB factory in Dammam, and will also meet representatives from Saudi Aramco, one of ABB’s most important customers in the region.

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Among other attendees at the IKTVA event are Paal Kibsgaard from Schlumberger (SLB.N) and Jeff Miller, CEO of oilfield services company Halliburton (HAL.N).

“Alongside being a responsible partner to our customers, we act as a responsible employer to our workforce. Therefore, our CEO will meet some 200 employees at our plant in Dammam during his trip to Saudi Arabia,” ABB said in a statement on Sunday.

“In addition, the CEO will also be meeting one of our most important customers in the region in order to foster further dialogue with them.”

Siemens confirmed the attendance of Kaeser at IKTVA, where he is among the speakers.

“This is a business trip to the Middle East where Mr. Kaeser will visit customers and business partners in the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia among others,” a Siemens spokesman said.

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