China and Saudi Arabia ink $91b of deals

China and Saudi Arabia ink $91b of deals

China and Saudi Arabia ink $91b of deals

Last year China imported 51 million tons of oil from the Saudi, and bilateral trade reached more than 42 billion U.S. Dollars. The three-day Chinese stop reciprocates Xi's visit to Riyadh previous year to shore up China's sphere of influence in the middle east.

The visits to countries that are some of the world's fastest-growing importers of Saudi oil aim to promote investment opportunities in the kingdom, including the sale of a stake in its giant state firm Saudi Aramco.

Another will see Saudi basic Industries Corp. and Sinopec work on petrochemical projects both in China and Saudi Arabia.

Xi told Salman in Beijing's Great Hall of the People that his visit showed the importance he attached to relations with China.

The agreements between Saudi Arabia and China will cover a variety of issues, ranging from energy to space technology.

"This visit will push forward and continue to improve the quality of our relations and bear new fruit", Xi said in comments in to reporters.

"King Salman's Asia trip occurs against the backdrop that USA global dominance has shown signs of declining amid America's gradual withdrawal from the Middle East and China has become increasingly active in the region", Li said.

Opposition parties in the Maldives had planned protests during Salman's visit against what they said was a government plan to sell 21 tiny islands to a member of the Saudi royal family.

- Saudi Aramco and Norinco Group signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to develop a refinery and chemical facilities in Panjin City.

China has traditionally played little role in Middle East conflicts or diplomacy, despite its reliance on the region for oil. The two already have a joint project - a refinery in Tianjin in northeastern China.

It was the king's first visit to China since taking the throne in 2015 upon the death of his half-brother King Abdullah.

It was a big hit for Saudi's oil-based economy.

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