China, Saudi Arabia, and fellow Arab and Gulf states share a relationship that dates back more than 2,000 years. Over the past few years under the wise leadership of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman and HRH Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the relations between Saudi Arabia and China have been strengthening further across various fields. This can be witnessed in Chinese President Xi Jinping’s recent state visit to Saudi Arabia – and attendance at the China-Arab Summit and China-Gulf Cooperation Council Summit.
The China-Arab Summit and China-Gulf Cooperation Council Summit held in the Saudi capital, Riyadh, with the participation of leaders of Arab countries and Chinese President Xi Jinping constituted a turning point in the strategic partnership between the two sides. It laid the foundation stone for economic and trade integration between Beijing and Arab countries, in light of regional and international developments, which cast a shadow on the movement of trade and global economic growth.
In an opinion piece published in Saudi Arabia’s media, President Xi wrote: “The visit will carry forward our traditional friendship, and usher in a new era in China’s relations with the Arab world, with Arab states of the Gulf and with Saudi Arabia.”
President Xi noted that Saudi Arabia is an important member of the Arab and Islamic world. It is also a key and independent force in the multipolar world and China’s important strategic partner in the Middle East. In recent years, China-Saudi Arabia relations have maintained high-level growth. The international and regional situation is undergoing profound and complex changes, making the strategic and overarching importance of China-Saudi Arabia relations more prominent.
On the sidelines of the visit, Saudi Arabia and China signed a strategic partnership agreement underlining the growing ties between Beijing and Riyadh. The two sides inked many partnership agreements concerning hydrogen energy, the Middle East Green Initiative, the kingdom’s Vision 2030, and China’s Belt and Road Initiative. China is all set to actively participate and contribute to Saudi Arabia’s industrialization and diversification of its economy. The two parties are also diligently working to achieve more results in all areas of bilateral cooperation.
These summits hosted by Saudi Arabia have embodied the strategic and leadership role the Kingdom plays at the regional and international levels, as a pillar of security and stability in the region and the world, under the wise leadership that reads the events and developments taking place in the world accurately and seeks to address them.
The success of these summits is an affirmation of the steadfast role of the Kingdom to consolidate the foundations of security, peace, prosperity, and development for the Arab and Chinese peoples, by finding a vital cooperation mechanism to develop means of exchanging expertise between the two sides, and to confront the current international developments, whether at the political, economic or cultural level.
Al–Jawhara bint Turki Al–Otaishan