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Cengiz said Khashoggi fled Saudi Arabia with two suitcases for the USA "amid a crackdown on intellectuals and activists who criticized Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman".

Long before the dissident Saudi journalist, the kingdom has sought influence in the West - perhaps intended, in part, to make us forget what it is.

The exchange dropped by over 500 points, then clawed back some of the losses, ending the day down 264 points, or more than 4 per cent.

"The King has ordered the Public Prosecutor to open an internal investigation into the Khashoggi matter based on the info from the joint team in Istanbul", a Saudi official, not authorized to speak publicly, told Reuters.

Still, regional traders said speculation the Khashoggi case might deter some inflows of foreign investment - and that a backlash in the US Congress could lead to US sanctions against some Saudi individuals - had triggered panic selling of stocks by some local investors.

Khashoggi, a columnist for The Washington Post and Saudi royal insider-turned-critic, went missing after entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2 to obtain paperwork that would allow him to marry his Turkish fiancée.

In a joint statement, Jeremy Hunt, Jean-Yves Le Drian and Heiko Maas said: "There needs to be a credible investigation to establish the truth about what happened, and - if relevant - to identify those bearing responsibility for the disappearance of Khashoggi and ensure that they are held to account".

Citing an "official source", the kingdom's press agency said that that it will not succumb to any political or economical pressures and nothing can as such can harm the economical position of the kingdom.

"The Kingdom's economy has an influential and vital role in the global economy and its economy is affected only by the impact of the global economy". Benchmark Brent crude is trading at around $80 a barrel, and Mr Trump has criticized OPEC and Saudi Arabia over rising prices. But it's not clear what those will entail, particularly if countries change their relationships with Saudi Arabia.

Mr Aldakhil added that Saudi arms purchases from the USA and other trade could be at risk as well.

Several individuals and major businesses have distanced themselves from Saudi Arabia and Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman, further isolating the Middle East powerhouse that vehemently denies involvement in Khashoggi's alleged murder. Those policies are all seen as initiatives of the crown prince.