King Salman’s visit to Beijing will boost relations: Envoy

King Salman’s visit to Beijing will boost relations: Envoy
Li Huaxin
Updated 08 March 2017

King Salman’s visit to Beijing will boost relations: Envoy

King Salman’s visit to Beijing will boost relations: Envoy

RIYADH: The visit of King Salman to Beijing on March 15 will be a landmark occasion, China’s ambassador in Riyadh, Li Huaxin, told Arab News on Tuesday.
Describing Saudi-Sino relations as going from strength to strength, Li said the visit will further boost those relations. He added that a comprehensive program has been lined up for the visiting king, and will be announced soon when the agenda is mutually agreed.
Chinese President Xi Jinping visited the Kingdom as part of his Middle East tour in January last year, during which the two sides decided to enhance bilateral ties to a comprehensive strategic partnership. Seven months later, Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman visited Beijing.
Li said: “The two countries have a similar vision in facing global challenges in the march toward economic, social and political developments.”
In January this year, Saudi Arabia opened a consulate in the Chinese city of Guangzhou with the aim of boosting bilateral relations.
Saudi-Sino trade volume in 2016 was $42.36 billion, including Chinese imports of $23.61 billion from the Kingdom and exports of $18.75 billion. Crude oil imports from the Kingdom were estimated at 51 million tons.
Saudi investments in China in 2016 amounted to $13.45 million, while Chinese investments in the Kingdom during the same period amounted to $120.54 million.
Li said areas of bilateral cooperation could be further diversified under Saudi Vision 2030.
Major Chinese companies and businesses are seeking cooperation with Saudi counterparts, especially in the areas of petrochemicals, natural gas, electricity generation, water desalination, transportation, telecommunications and electronics.
Li said there were 14,500 Chinese Haj pilgrims last year. “We are thankful to the Saudi government for its kind assistance in making their pilgrimage an unqualified success,” he added.