SAUDI ARABIA

Saudi Arabia, China issue joint statement after Xi's visit

December 09, 2022
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and President Xi of China hold official talks
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and President Xi of China hold official talks

RIYADH — Saudi Arabia and China on Friday issued a joint statement following summit talks between the leaders of the two countries in Riyadh during Chinese President Xi Jinping's state visit to the Kingdom.

The full text of the statement:

At the Invitation of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, King of Saudi Arabia, and within the framework of strengthening strategic relations between the Kingdom and the People's Republic of China, His Excellency President Xi Jinping paid an official state visit to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia during 13-15 of Jamada I 1444 AH, corresponding to 7-9 December 2022.

The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman, and His Royal Highness Prince Mohammed bin Salman, Crown Prince and Prime Minister, received His Excellency, President Xi Jinping.

The two sides held an official session of talks and exchanged views regarding ways to reinforce and develop comprehensive strategic partnership relations between the Kingdom and China, and all international and regional issues of common interest. The two sides expressed their satisfaction with the progressive stages of bilateral relations during the past three decades. Moreover, they stressed the importance of continuing joint action in all fields, deepening relations within the framework of the comprehensive strategic partnership between the two countries, and reaching new and promising horizons. The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman and Chinese President Xi Jinping signed the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership Agreement between the Kingdom and China.

The two sides praised the positive and fruitful outcomes of the visit of President Xi Jinping to the Kingdom in January 2016, as well as the visit of King Salman to China in March 2017, in addition to the visit of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in February 2019 to China — visits that contributed to expanding the scope of cooperation between the two countries in various fields.

Regarding bilateral relations, the two sides stressed the importance of continuing to expand Saudi-Chinese relations in their international framework and setting an example of cooperation, solidarity, and mutual gain for developing countries. The Saudi side congratulated China on the success of convening the 20th National Congress of the Chinese Communist Party. In addition, the Chinese side congratulated the Kingdom for the great achievements made in the field of national development within the framework of Vision 2030.

The two sides reaffirmed that they will continue to firmly support each other's core interests, support each other in maintaining their sovereignty and territorial integrity, and exert joint efforts to defend the principle of non-interference in the internal affairs of states, rules of international law and basic principles of international relations. The Saudi side reaffirmed its adherence to the one-China principle. Moreover, the Chinese side expressed support for the Kingdom in maintaining its security and stability and affirmed its opposition to any actions that would interfere in the internal affairs of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and rejects any attacks targeting civilians, civilian facilities, territories, and Saudi interests.

The two sides stressed the importance of enhancing cooperation through the high-level Saudi-Chinese Joint Committee to achieve common goals, enhancing cooperation between the two countries in all fields, and intensifying communication between the government and private sectors in the two countries to discuss economic, trade and investment opportunities and translate them into tangible partnerships, and enhancing cooperation in areas that aim to elevate the economic and developmental relationship between the two countries to broader horizons.

Regarding the energy sector, both sides affirmed that their enhancement of cooperation in this field is considered an important strategic partnership. The two sides commended their oil trade volume and the great foundations of the cooperation due to the Kingdom’s ample oil resources and China’s broad markets. They also indicated that the development and consolidation of cooperation in the field of oil is in conformity with the common interests of both sides. In addition, they stressed the importance of stability in the world oil markets. The People’s Republic of China welcomed the Kingdom’s role as a supporter of the balance and stability in the world oil markets, and as a reliable major exporter of crude oil to China. The two sides agreed to explore common investment opportunities in petrochemicals sector, develop promising projects in petrochemical conversion techniques, and enhance joint cooperation in a number of fields and projects including electricity, PV energy, wind energy, and other sources of renewable energy. The two sides also agreed to develop related projects, innovative uses of hydrocarbon resources, energy efficiency, and localization of energy sector components and its supply chains, in addition to cooperating in the peaceful uses of nuclear energy and the development of modern technologies such as artificial intelligence, as well as innovation in the energy sector.

The two sides stressed the importance of deepening joint cooperation with regard to the “Belt and Road Initiative”, welcoming the related Saudi companies' involvement in various energy and investment partnerships within the framework of “The Belt and Road Initiative”, enhancing the Kingdom’s location as a regional center for Chinese companies in producing and exporting the products of the energy sector, as well as the joint investment in energy projects in the countries of the region and energy consuming countries in Europe and Africa. All of this will contribute to developing Saudi local content, and achieve self-sufficiency for China in the field of petrochemicals through its related investment in the Kingdom.

Regarding climate change, the Chinese side welcomed the Kingdom’s launching of “Saudi Green” and “Middle East Green” initiatives and expressed its support for all the efforts exerted by the Kingdom in the field of climate change through the application of circular carbon economy approach launched by the Kingdom and approved by the G20 leaders. Both sides emphasized the importance of the principles of the Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Paris Agreement, as well as the importance of implementing climate conventions by focusing on emissions rather than sources. The two sides agreed to continue their coordination on energy policies through the use of circular carbon economy as a tool to manage emissions and achieve climate targets. They also agreed to urge developed countries to take their historic responsibilities seriously, through the fulfillment of their obligations by greatly reducing emissions before the target date, and to tangibly help developing countries through financial, technical, and capacity building support.

The two sides commended the growth of intra-trade and investment between their two countries, which embodies the depth and sustainability of their economic relations. They also affirmed their willingness to increase the volume of non-oil trade, facilitate the Kingdom’s non-oil exports to China, as well as to increase the joint quality investment between the two countries. The two sides agreed to enhance the work to benefit from the available trade and investment opportunities, intensify the capacity of aircraft carriers, motivate private sectors investment partnerships in both countries, and consolidate efforts to create an attractive, supportive, and incentive investment environment within the framework of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 and “Belt and Road Initiative”, through deepening cooperation in a number of fields including the automotive industry, supply chains, logistics, water desalination, infrastructure, manufacturing, mining, and the financial sector.

The Saudi side expressed its aspiration to attract Chinese expertise to participate in the future mega-projects in the Kingdom, in addition to its keenness to enable Saudi investments in the People's Republic of China and overcome the difficulties such investments may face. The Saudi side also stressed the importance of attracting international Chinese companies to open regional headquarters in the Kingdom and appreciated the interest of a number of companies in that regard as they are obtaining licenses to establish their regional headquarters in the Kingdom, to ultimately benefit from the exceptional Chinese experiences and capabilities for the benefit of the economies of the two countries.

The two sides expressed their satisfaction with signing a "harmonization plan" between the Kingdom's Vision 2030 and the “Belt and Road Initiative”. The two sides agreed on the importance of accelerating the pace of harmonization between their projects in the two countries, employing integrated advantages, and deepening practical cooperation between the two sides so as to obtain mutual benefits and common development. The two sides also welcomed the signing of (12) agreements and government memoranda of understanding for cooperation in the fields of hydrogen energy, the judiciary field, Chinese language education, housing, direct investment, radio and television, digital economy, economic development, standardization, news coverage, tax administration, and anti-corruption. In addition to the signing of 9 agreements and memoranda of understanding between the government and private sectors, and the signing of 25 agreements and memoranda of understanding between companies in the two countries.

The Chinese side invited the Saudi side to be the guest of honor for the sixth session of the Arab-Chinese Exhibition for the year 2023. The Chinese side also expressed its keenness to deepen investment cooperation with the Saudi side in the digital economy and green development, enhance cooperation in e-commerce, and explore means of joint economic and trade cooperation with Africa. The Saudi side also welcomed Chinese companies’ investments in the Kingdom, through the mega investment opportunities provided by Vision 2030 in various sectors. On the other hand, the Chinese side welcomed the enhancement of investments of sovereign wealth funds and Saudi industrial capital in China. The two sides agreed to encourage building partnerships between investment funds in the two countries.

Regarding the financial field, the two sides stressed the importance of joint cooperation to support the success of the “Common Framework for Debt Treatment beyond the scope of the Debt Service Suspension Initiative”, which was endorsed by the G20 leaders at the G20 summit headed by the Kingdom. The two sides also confirmed the need to coordinate relevant positions in international forums such as G20, International Monetary Fund, World Bank, and Asian Bank, in order to invest in infrastructure and other areas, in a manner that enhances efforts aimed at increasing the effectiveness and governance of these groups and institutions. The two sides also confirmed the importance of enhancing cooperation in the field of tax policies, thus contributing to enhancing financial, trade and investment cooperation between the two countries.

Regarding water and agriculture field, the Saudi side welcomed the establishment of a direct partnership between the Chinese private sector and the Saudi private sector concerning the investment opportunities available in the Kingdom in the fields of desalination plants, drinking water, water transport lines, sewage treatment plants, dams, and the organization of commercial activities between representatives of the private sector in both countries to discuss investment possibilities in the agricultural sector as well as agricultural and food industries, and the development of agricultural investment projects.

Regarding the communications and information technology field, the two sides stressed the need to strengthen partnerships in areas related to communications, digital economy, innovation and space to achieve a better digital future for future generations in both countries.

Regarding the transportation and logistics field, the two sides stressed the importance of enhancing cooperation and joint action on developing the air and sea transport sectors, modern transport modes and railways, and expediting the completion of studies on the Saudi land bridge project.

The two sides also stressed the importance of strengthening and developing cooperation in the industrial and mining sectors, in a way that serves their common interests.

Regarding the defense and security field, the two sides affirmed their determination to develop cooperation and coordination in defense fields, enhance and raise the level of exchange of information and expertise in the field of combating organized crime, including terrorist crimes, prevent violence and extremism, in addition to enhancing cooperation and coordination of efforts and exchange of expertise in the areas of early- warning risk intelligence, security risks assessment and combating cybercrimes, in a way that serves and achieves the common interests of the two countries.

The two sides reaffirmed the rejection and denunciation of terrorism and extremism in all its forms, the refusal to link terrorism to any particular culture, race or religion, the refusal to practice double standards in combating terrorism, and the importance of spreading moderation and tolerance. The two sides also praised the level of security cooperation between the two friendly countries in the field of combating terrorism and its financing.

The two sides agreed to enhance joint international cooperation to combat cross-border corruption crimes in all its forms, ensure the achievement of common goals related to consolidating the principles of transparency, integrity, communication and effective cooperation between the agencies concerned with combating corruption in the two countries, and benefit from the principles endorsed by the G20 regarding combating corruption and pursuing fugitive criminals and recovering proceeds of crime, and the Riyadh Global Initiative for Anti-Corruption Law Enforcement Authorities in the field of investigations of corruption cases, prosecution of perpetrators, and recovery of proceeds of crime.

The two sides stressed the importance of strengthening cooperation between them in healthcare and raising the level of coordination between them to combat current and future health threats and pandemics.

Regarding the cultural field, the two sides discussed ways to enhance cooperation between them within the framework of the historical and cultural relations that unite the two friendly countries, and expressed support and appreciation for many cultural initiatives that express the strength of Saudi-Chinese relations, they also welcomed the launch of the first edition of the Prince Mohammed bin Salman Award for Cultural Cooperation between the two countries. The two sides also stressed the importance of jointly organizing the Chinese-Saudi Digital Cultural Year, implementing the memoranda of understanding signed in a number of cultural fields. In addition, the two sides stressed the importance of cooperation in the field of tourism and promotional activities between the two countries, exploring tourism potentials that both countries have, and promoting joint action in sustainable tourism sectors for the benefit of the tourism sector and its development. The Chinese side announced endorsing the Kingdom as an outbound tourist destination for Chinese tourist groups.

Regarding the sports field, the two sides stressed the importance of strengthening cooperation and partnership in sports programs and activities between the two countries.

Regarding the education field, the two sides welcomed the raising of the level of scientific and educational cooperation between the two countries. They commended the progress achieved in cooperation between them in this field, and agreed on continuing to encourage direct communication between universities and academic, scientific and research institutions in the two countries, to promote cooperation in the areas of digital education and teaching Arabic and Chinese languages in schools, universities and educational institutions in the two countries. The two sides stressed the importance of cooperation and enhancing the level of partnerships and sharing experiences and information in various areas of work and human resources in order to achieve their mutual interests.

Regarding the media field, the two sides agreed to strengthen the existing media cooperation between the two countries, discuss opportunities for its development in the areas of radio, television, news agencies and the press, and exchange experiences and media visits in order to promote the development of joint media action.

The Chinese side commended the efforts exerted by the Government of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in serving Chinese pilgrims, and its cooperation in organizing Chinese Hajj campaigns and facilitating the performance of Hajj and Umrah for Chinese pilgrims.

Regarding regional and international matters, the two sides welcomed the holding of the first China-GCC summit, and the first Arab-Chinese summit in the Kingdom in the city of Riyadh on Friday 15/5/1444 AH corresponding to the 9th of December 2022, and expressed their aspiration for the two summits to achieve their desired goals to serve the Gulf and Arab-Chinese relations. They also stressed that holding China-GCC summit and Arab- Chinese summit is of particular importance in light of the current international situations, and affirmed their support for the "China-Arab community with a shared future in the new era" initiative. Furthermore, they commended the important role of the China-Arab States Cooperation Forum in promoting collective cooperation between China and Arab countries and expressed their willingness to participate in building and developing the Forum. They also stressed the importance of joint action to strengthen strategic partnership relations between the GCC States and China, conclude a free trade agreement between the GCC and China, and work towards holding the GCC-China Meeting of Ministers of Economy and Trade 6 + 1 between GCC and China.

The two sides reaffirmed their determination to continue coordinating and intensifying efforts to maintain international peace and security, continue their coordination in the relevant organizations, call for constructive dialogue in order to achieve the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations and the fundamental principles of international relations. They stressed that the situations of the region are related to security and stability in the world, and that working towards peace and prosperity in the region is in conformity with the common interest of the international community. They also agreed on the importance of finding peaceful and political solutions to the region's urgent issues through dialogue and consultation based on respect for the sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of the States of the region.

The Chinese side commended the Kingdom's positive contributions and outstanding support for the promotion of regional and international peace and stability. The Saudi side commended the efforts and initiatives of the People's Republic of China to achieve security and stability in the Middle East. The two sides also agreed on the importance of strengthening their cooperation and partnership in order to support stability and development in the African continent.

The Saudi side expressed its support for Global Development Initiative launched by His Excellency the Chinese President Xi Jinping and looked forward to participating in cooperation within the framework of the Initiative, thereby contributing to accelerating the implementation of the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The Saudi side also expressed its appreciation for the Global Security Initiative launched by His Excellency Chinese President Xi Jinping.

The two sides also discussed the most prominent global economic challenges and the role of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the People's Republic of China in supporting international efforts to address these challenges. They also stressed the importance of joint action to advance comprehensive global development for the benefit of all, and the importance of stabilizing global energy markets and food supply of wheat and grains to all countries without any disruption, as well as maintaining oversupply and stable prices.

Regarding political issues, the two sides affirmed their full support for efforts to reach a political solution to the Yemeni crisis. The Chinese side commended the Kingdom's initiative to end the war in Yemen and its numerous efforts and initiatives aimed at encouraging dialogue between Yemeni parties. The two sides also stressed the importance of supporting the Yemeni Presidential Leadership Council to enable it to perform its functions and reach a political solution to the Yemeni crisis in accordance with the Gulf Initiative and its executive mechanisms, the outcomes of the Yemeni National Dialogue, and Security Council Resolution No. 2216 (2015). They also stressed the importance of the Houthis' commitment to a truce, cooperation with the UN Special Envoy for Yemen, and serious engagement with initiatives and efforts for peace in order to reach a permanent and comprehensive political solution to the Yemeni crisis. The Chinese side valued the Kingdom's humanitarian relief and development aid to the Yemeni people through King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Centre together with the Saudi Program for the Development and Reconstruction of Yemen.

Regarding Iran, the two sides agreed on the need to strengthen joint cooperation to ensure the peaceful nature of Iran's nuclear program. The two sides also called on Iran to cooperate with the International Atomic Energy Agency, maintain the non- proliferation regime, and emphasize respect for the principles of good- neighborliness and non-interference in the internal affairs of states.

The two sides discussed the developments in the Palestinian cause and stressed the need to intensify efforts to achieve a comprehensive and just settlement of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict and find a real horizon for resuming serious and effective negotiations in order to achieve peace in accordance with the principle of a two-state solution, the relevant international legitimacy resolutions, and Arab Peace Initiative, in a way that guarantees the rights of Palestinian people to establish their independent state on the 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as its capital.

Regarding Syria, the two sides stressed the need to intensify efforts to reach a political solution to the Syrian crisis that preserves Syria's unity and territorial integrity, restores its security and ends terrorism, and creates the necessary conditions for the voluntary return of refugees. They also affirmed their continued support for the efforts of the United Nations and its Special Envoy for Syria.

Regarding Lebanon, the two sides affirmed their concern for the security, stability, and unity of the Lebanese territories. They also stressed the importance of carrying out the necessary reforms, dialogue and consultation to ensure that Lebanon overcomes its crisis, in order to avoid being the starting point for any terrorist acts, becoming incubators for terrorist organizations and groups that destabilize the security and stability of the region, or to be a source or crossing point for drug smuggling.

Regarding Iraq, the two sides affirmed their continuation in providing support to the Republic of Iraq, and welcomed the formation of the new Iraqi government, wishing for it success in achieving the aspirations of the Iraqi people for security, stability, and development.

Regarding Afghanistan, the two sides stressed the importance of supporting efforts that would achieve security and stability in Afghanistan, ensuring that Afghanistan does not become a haven for terrorist and extremist groups. They also stressed the importance of strengthening humanitarian efforts exerted by the international community to stop the ongoing deterioration of the humanitarian situation in Afghanistan, and to deliver humanitarian aid to the Afghan people.

Regarding Ukraine, the two sides stressed the importance of resolving the conflict by peaceful means, and exerting all possible efforts to reduce escalation in a way that contributes to restoring security and stability, and limits the negative consequences of this crisis. In addition, the Chinese side pointed out its six- point initiative regarding the humanitarian situation in Ukraine, its provision of humanitarian aid to Ukraine, and its call for preventing a large-scale humanitarian crisis. The Chinese side expressed its appreciation for the humanitarian and political efforts made by His Royal Highness Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Crown Prince and Prime Minister, in providing humanitarian aid to Ukraine, and the release of a number of prisoners of war of different nationalities. The Chinese side also praised the additional humanitarian aid package which the Kingdom recently provided to Ukraine in the amount of 400 million US dollars, which will contribute in alleviating the suffering of the Ukrainian people.

At the conclusion of the visit, His Excellency the Chinese President expressed his gratitude and appreciation to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, and His Royal Highness Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz, Crown Prince and Prime Minister, for the warm reception and hospitality accorded to His Excellency and the accompanying delegation. His Excellency invited the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud to visit China at a mutually convenient time, and the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques expressed his acceptance of the invitation of His Excellency. The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, and His Royal Highness Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz, Crown Prince and Prime Minister, also expressed their best wishes of permanent good health and happiness to His Excellency, and to the friendly people of China further progress and advancement. — SPA


December 09, 2022
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