Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping said in Jeddah Saturday China places great importance on its relations with Saudi Arabia and regards the country as a close friend and partner.
Xi made the remarks when meeting with King Abdullah bin Abdul-Azizi Al-Saud of Saudi Arabia Saturday afternoon.
Xi conveyed the greetings and good wishes from Chinese President Hu Jintao to King Abdullah.
Xi said since the heads of state of the two countries exchanged visits in 2006, China and Saudi Arabia have witnessed smooth development of bilateral links in an all-round way.
Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping (L) meets with Saudi Arabian King Abdullah bin Abdul-Azizi Al-Saud (R) in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, June 21, 2008. Xi arrived in Jeddah for an official visit to Saudi Arabia Saturday.
China attaches great significance to the ties with Saudi Arabia and sees Saudi Arabia as a close friend and partner, Xi said, adding China is willing to join efforts with Saudi Arabia to substantially implement the consensuses reached by the heads of state so as to continuously reinforce and expand the friendly and cooperative relations between the two countries.
At the same time, the Chinese vice president said, the two countries should jointly work for maintaining peace and stability in the region and the world at large and promoting development and progress of the human kind.
King Abdullah said Saudi Arabia and China are true friends, noting that relations between the two countries enjoy a solid base.
Saudi Arabia appreciates China's friendly policy and its impartial stance on international affairs, the king said, adding that Saudi Arabia treasures the traditional friendship with China and is ready to maintain high-level contact with China and strengthen exchange and cooperation in all fields.
Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping (R, front) meets with Saudi Arabian King Abdullah bin Abdul-Azizi Al-Saud (L, front) in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, June 21, 2008. Xi arrived in Jeddah for an official visit to Saudi Arabia Saturday.
Xi thanked King Abdullah for his support and assistance to China after a severe earthquake in Wenchuan of southwest China's Sichuan province, stressing that this move fully reflects the deep friendly feelings the Saudi king and people cherish toward the Chinese people.
China will use the fund donated by Saudi Arabia to build schools and hospitals in the earthquake-hit areas to mark the friendship between China and Saudi Arabia.
King Abdullah expressed condolence again to China on the losses caused by the devastating earthquake, saying that Saudi Arabia is ready to offer more support and assistance to China.
Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping (L) shakes hands with Saudi Arabian Prince Sultan bin Abdul-Aziz Al-Saud after signing a joint declaration in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, June 21, 2008.
Xi briefed the king on the propositions of the Chinese government on building a harmonious society and promoting a harmonious world with lasting peace and universal prosperity.
Xi also informed King Abdullah of the progress in the preparation for the upcoming Beijing Olympic Games, voicing the belief that China is able to host a high-standard Olympic Games with unique characteristics, with the support and help of Saudi Arabia and the rest of the international community.
King Abdullah said Saudi Arabia holds that different civilizations should show respect and boost dialogue with each other so as to coexist harmoniously. He expressed his belief that Beijing Olympic Games will be a success and an opportunity for people from all over the world to promote their friendship.
The Chinese vice president also held talks with Crown Prince Sultan bin Abdul-Aziz Al-Saud Saturday afternoon.
During the talks, Xi said in recent years China and Saudi Arabia have witnessed rapid growth of cooperation in all fields, noting that Saudi Arabia has remained the top trade partner of China in West Asia and Africa for the past seven years.
Xi said China places great importance on the friendly and cooperative relations with Saudi Arabia and is ready to work with Saudi Arabia to substantially push forward practical cooperation in all fields.
Xi put forward a number of suggestions on advancing Sino-Saudi relations. Firstly, he said the two countries should maintain high-level contact and communication, enhance consultation and coordination at all levels, expand common ground, improve mutual trust and strengthen mutual support and cooperation on regional and international affairs.
Secondly, the two countries should expand cooperation in such fields as economy, trade and energy by fully tapping into the complementarity of the two economies, advance the building of a sound and efficient system of investment and cooperation, strengthen cooperation in such fields as infrastructure construction, engineering project contracts, labor export and occupational training, he added.
Thirdly, Xi said the two countries should enhance cultural exchanges and step up dialogues between different civilizations so as to deepen mutual understanding and friendship between the two peoples.
Crown Prince Sultan said the Saudi people cherish deep friendly feelings toward the Chinese people and regard China as an important cooperative partner, adding that Saudi Arabia wishes to increase exchanges with China, and strengthen communication and coordination with China on bilateral relations and regional and international affairs.
The two nations should give a full play to the role of the mixed committee of trade and economy in a bid to accelerate cooperation in economy, trade, energy, science and technology and culture, support their companies to develop cooperation and lift bilateral links to a higher level, said the crown prince.
After the talks, Xi and Crown Prince Sultan signed a China-Saudi Arabia joint statement on strengthening cooperative and strategic friendly relations, which is aimed to further enhance bilateral exchanges and cooperation in such fields as politics, economy, trade, fiscal policy, culture and regional and international affairs.
They also witnessed the signing of an agreement between the two governments on strengthening cooperation in the field of infrastructure construction.
The Chinese vice president arrived in Jeddah Saturday morning for an official visit to Saudi Arabia. During his visit, Xi will also attend the opening ceremony of China-Saudi Arabia Economic and Trade Seminar and the opening ceremony of the International Energy Conference in Jeddah.
Saudi Arabia is the third leg of Xi's ongoing five-nation tour. He has completed official visits to the Democratic People's Republic of Korea and Mongolia, and will next head to Qatar and Yemen. Source:Xinhua