Xi's Saudi visit to shore up unity

By ZHANG YUNBI in Beijing and XU WEI in Riyadh (China Daily) 15:30, December 08, 2022

China, Arab states to set blueprint for growth, teamwork

Unity and collaboration between China and Arab nations is set for a significant boost after President Xi Jinping arrived in Saudi Arabia's capital, Riyadh, on Wednesday for a state visit.

During his four-day Middle East trip, Xi will attend two important conferences — the first China-Arab States Summit and the first summit of the China and Gulf Cooperation Council.

China and Saudi Arabia are good friends, partners and brothers, Xi said in written remarks upon his arrival on Wednesday.

The two sides have always understood and supported each other over the past 32 years, during which strategic mutual trust has been consolidated and pragmatic cooperation has yielded fruitful results, Xi added.

As the world grapples with the COVID-19 pandemic and challenges to a global economic recovery, China and Arab countries will use Xi's visit to step up support for each other's self-reliant development, bolster post-pandemic prosperity, and advance peace and stability in the region, observers said.

The China-Arab States Summit is the first opportunity for face-to-face communication between leaders since the outbreak of the pandemic, Chinese consul-general in Dubai, Li Xuhang, told local media. It is also the first major multilateral diplomatic event co-chaired by China after the conclusion of the 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China in October, he added.

"The summit constitutes a major diplomatic action of the largest scale and highest protocols intended for the Arab world since the founding of the People's Republic of China, and will become a milestone in the history of China-Arab ties," Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Mao Ning said on Wednesday.

The two sides will map out a blueprint for future cooperation, and render each other firm support, promote common development and defend multilateralism, Mao said.


(Web editor: Cai Hairuo, Liang Jun)


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