Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman visits Great Wall of China

1 / 3
Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman on the Great Wall of China during his official trip to the country. (SPA)
2 / 3
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman arrived Thursday morning. (SPA)
3 / 3
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman arrived Thursday morning. (SPA)
Updated 22 February 2019

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman visits Great Wall of China

  • Crown prince arrived in China on Thursday, on the third leg of his Asia tour
  • He will meet the Chinese President Xi Jinping during the official visit

BEIJING: China and Saudi Arabia agreed on Thursday to further boost financial cooperation as Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman arrived in Beijing on the final leg of his Asia tour.

The crown prince was due to meet President Xi Jinping in Beijing. Later he was expected to join Chinese Vice Premier Han Zheng to co-chair the third meeting of the China-Saudi Arabia High-Level Joint Committee.

At the airport, the crown prince was greeted by a number of Chinese officials, including Khi Li Fung, Deputy Chairman of the Advisory and Political Council of the People's Republic of China, and Chinese Ambassador to the Kingdom Li Huaxin.

The crown prince visited the Great Wall of China on Thursday, where he posed for photos and took in the dramtic scenery.

Among the most striking initiatives agreed by the two countries is a plan to develop greater integration between China’s Belt and Road development strategy and the Saudi Vision 2030 reform program.

Support for a multilateral approach to development and greater policy communication were agreed at a meeting of a financial subcommittee, jointly chaired by Chinese Vice Finance Minister Zou Jiayi and her Saudi counterpart Hamad Al-Bazai.

Meanwhile, more than 25 Saudi government and private companies will launch their products and services at a major investment forum held in conjunction with the crown prince’s visit.

“Invest in Saudi Arabia,” organized by the Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority and the Saudi Center for International Strategic Partnerships, will take place at the Sino-Saudi Forum in Beijing on Friday. 

The investment forum will promote closer economic ties in sectors including industry, energy, transport, finance, culture, heritage and agriculture. 

More than 1,000 visitors, including leading investors, decision makers and investment companies, will focus on business links between the Kingdom and China, with partnerships and agreements likely to be agreed in several fields.

Other initiatives signed off by the Saudi and Chinese delegations include support for reform of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, and backing for new multilateral development institutions, such as the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank.

In a separate meeting, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi and Saudi Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Adel Al-Jubeir hailed the rapid growth of cooperation and mutual understanding between the two countries.

Saudi Energy Minister Khalid Al-Falih also said the crown prince’s visit will lift bilateral relations to a “new high.” 

As the Kingdom’s largest trading partner, “China is climbing the ladder very quickly with its technology, capabilities and exports in the world,” Al-Falih said.

“This major investment is just starting,” Al-Falih said. “Saudi Arabia has a lot of capital that needs to find profitable places to be deployed. China is a great place to invest.”

The Saudi minister expressed confidence in planned integration between Vision 2030 and China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).


Saudi camel racing no longer an all-male affair, says Princess Jamila

Updated 23 March 2019

Saudi camel racing no longer an all-male affair, says Princess Jamila

  • Princess Jamila’s camel will compete in a race marking the conclusion of the King Abdul Aziz Camel Festival
  • King Salman will attend the grand finale of the 46-day event

JEDDAH: A camel owned by a woman will compete in an official race in Saudi Arabia for the first time, a senior figure in the sport said on Friday.

Fahd bin Hithleen, chairman of the board of directors of the Saudi Camel Club and the newly appointed president of the International Camel Organization (ICO), said the race is part of the closing day of the King Abdul Aziz Camel Festival on the outskirts of Riyadh, which began on Feb. 5 and ends on March 23.

“The camel race will end this Saturday with the participation of the first female in camel racing,” Hithleen said on his official Twitter account. “I congratulate Princess Jamila Bint Abdulmajeed bin Saud bin Abdulaziz for breaking into the camel world and wish her all the success.”

The festival finale will take place in the presence of King Salman.

Princess Jamila said that camel racing is no longer exclusively the preserve of men, as the ongoing reforms in the country continue to empower Saudi women and open up new opportunities for them across the Kingdom.

The Kingdom established the ICO, the first global group of its kind for camels, on Thursday with the participation of representatives from 96 countries. Riyadh was chosen as the location for its headquarters and Hithleen was appointed to serve a five-year term as its first president.