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China National News Saturday, March 18th, 2017




On Friday, Saudi Arabia’s King Salman met with China’s premier and the two nations reportedly signed a memorandum of understanding on investment cooperation valued at $65 billion.

As part of the agreement between the two countries, a total of 35 separate projects were signed.

According to reports, the agreement aims to boost joint efforts in fields including energy, investment, finance, culture and aerospace.

The agreement was signed on Thursday after King Salman held talks with President Xi Jinping, during which the Chinese leader said results of their burgeoning cooperation had already “surpassed our expectations.”

As Saudi Arabia continues to develop a growth strategy that is less dependent on oil, it is increasing its partnership with many countries.

Further, Saudi’s agreement with Beijing comes in light of China’s efforts to roll out a massive trade and investment initiative across Central Asia and the Middle East.

The initiative called “One Belt, One Road” believes that the kingdom of Saudi Arabia would be a regional linchpin.

Saudi’s state-owned oil producer, Aramco, is a partner with state-owned China Petroleum & Chemical Corp. and the desert kingdom is China’s biggest supplier of crude oil.

Both the companies even operate a refinery in Fujian province along with other Chinese projects.

The companies have even enhanced their security ties in recent times, with the Saudi air force deploying Chinese unmanned attack drones.

The two militaries are also holding joint counter-terrorism exercises in western China.

Further, as part of increasingly active maneuvers in the Gulf of Aden, the Chinese navy vessels have also visited the Saudi port of Jeddah.

King Salman has already visited Japan, Indonesia, Malaysia and Brunei.

He is now scheduled to travel to the Indian Ocean island nation of the Maldives.



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