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Xi Jinping started his two-day visit to Saudi Arabia.

  • Author:judy
  • Source:www.diecastingpartsupplier.com
  • Release on:2016-01-21

Chinese President Xi Jinping Tuesday announcedwith his Saudi host that the two countries welcomethe progress made in China-Gulf Cooperation Council(GCC) free trade area negotiation, and agreed toestablish the free trade area as early as possible ashe started his two-day visit to Saudi Arabia.

They also pledged to resolutely oppose terrorism inany form that threatens world peace and stability, vowing to strengthen securitycooperation.

"We are against linking terrorism with any religion or religious sect," the two countriesannounced in a joint statement signed as Xi is visiting the kingdom.

Wu Yihong, an expert on the Middle East, told the Global Times that another main focus of Xi'sSaudi trip will be upgrading China's and Saudi Arabia's energy cooperation, which is at thecenter of the two countries' economic ties.

Saudi Arabia is China's biggest global supplier of crude oil and its biggest trading partner inWest Asia and Africa, as well as a heavyweight among Gulf monarchies. In 2013, China becamethe biggest trading partner of Saudi Arabia for the first time.

Two-way trade reached $69.1 billion in 2014, 230 times more than at the establishment ofdiplomatic ties in 1990. Today, one in six barrels of the crude oil China imports comes fromSaudi Arabia.

Analysts said the upgrade is driven by China's weaker-than-expected crude oil demand andSaudi Arabia's desire to diversify its economy.

Xi's visit also seeks to enhance cooperation with Saudi in infrastructure and investment.

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