KSA, China have similar vision on global challenges

Chinese Ambassador Li Huaxin during a press conference, in Riyadh.
Updated 18 February 2017
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KSA, China have similar vision on global challenges

RIYADH: Chinese Ambassador Li Huaxin said at a press conference held at his residence that Saudi-China relations are growing to greater heights.
The envoy was giving an overview of the bilateral relations between the two countries in preparation for the forthcoming visit of King Salman to China in March.
The ambassador recalled that the diplomatic relations between the two countries were established in 1990 and have evolved successfully to reach a strategic level in the partnership phase.
He said the Chinese President Xi Jinping made a two-day visit as part of his Mideast tour in January 2016.
Seven months later, Jinping’s visit was followed by Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s three-day official visit to Beijing where he met with Jinping at the presidential office of the world’s second biggest economic power.
During their meeting, President Xi and Prince Mohammed reviewed Saudi-China “bilateral relations and achievements, and ways to further develop the strategic cooperation between the two countries.”
Prince Mohammed, who is also second deputy premier and minister of defense, also met with a group of officials of the most important Chinese companies, which included ZTE, Huawei, Chinese Aluminum (Chalco), the region’s economic and technological development in Tianjin (TEDA), Chinese Company for Construction and Communications (CCCC) and China Company for Building Railways.
During the meeting, they reviewed investment opportunities in the Kingdom, the areas of partnership according to the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 and existing and future projects of the companies in the Kingdom.
He said that the two countries have a common cause to fight against terror, which has affected peace and security in many countries.
“The two countries have similar vision in facing global challenges in the march toward economic, social and political developments,” the ambassador said.
The trade volume between China and the Kingdom in 2016 was $42.36 billion. It includes Chinese imports of $23.61 billion from the Kingdom, while it exports $18.75 billion.
Crude oil imports from the Kingdom was estimated at 51 million tons, an increase of 0.9 percent, which accounted for 13.4 percent of China’s total imports, which was $15.57 billion.
Saudi investments in China in 2016 were $13.45 million, while the Chinese investments in the Kingdom during the same period was $120.54 million, an increase 46 percent.
The Chinese ambassasor also said areas of bilateral cooperation could be further diversified under the Saudi Vision 2030.
China is one of the economic players in the international market.
Major Chinese companies and businesses are seeking cooperation with their counterparts in the Kingdom, especially in the areas of petrochemicals, natural gas, electricity generation, water desalination, transportation, telecommunications, and electronics.


FaceOf: Fahad bin Sulaiman Altekhaifi, president of the General Authority for Statistics 

Updated 22 August 2018
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FaceOf: Fahad bin Sulaiman Altekhaifi, president of the General Authority for Statistics 

Fahad bin Sulaiman Altekhaifi has been the president of the General Authority for Statistics (GASTAT) since his appointment to the post in May 2016.

On Monday GASTAT announced this year’s Hajj statistics, revealing detailed information on the number of pilgrims (which amounted to 2,371,675) performing Hajj this year, their genders, nationalities and whether they arrived through air, land or seaports.

The president conveyed his gratitude to all government and security entities that helped the authority to collect data, and praised the 450 GASTAT researchers who worked to compile the information and deliver it to the public.

He said that the collected data would help facilitate better experiences and easier pilgrimages for future programs, and better services for pilgrims — from social to health, and transportation to security and food.

Altekhaifi received his bachelor’s degree in mathematics from King Saud University in 1992, a master’s degree in statistics from Colorado State University in 1996, and his applied statistics and research methodology Ph.D. from the University of Northern Colorado in 2001.

He worked as a manager of a financial program at the Institute of Public Administration in Riyadh from 1993 to 2005. For two years after that, he was a project director at the EIS department in Zuhair Fayez Partnership Consultants.

In 2007, Altekhaifi was appointed a manager of the research department at the Capital Market Authority, before becoming assistant deputy minister for development in November 2011. 

In June 2015, he was the director general of the Central Department of Statistics and Information. He served as the acting president of GASTAT in February 2016, before being appointed president on May 2016.