Riyadh summit is milestone in Sino-Arab relations, says envoy

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Leaders pose for a photo picture during the Sino-Arab Summit in the Saudi capital Riyadh, on December 9, 2022. (File photo: Saudi Press Agency/AFP)


AMMAN — Chinese Ambassador to Jordan Chen Chuandong hailed the Sino-Arab Summit, held recently in Riyadh, at a press conference on Wednesday, according to the Jordan News Agency, Petra. He called the summt a milestone in the history of Chinese-Arab relations.

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The summit marks the first time that all Arab countries have met with a country outside the region, said the envoy.


Jordanian-Chinese relations are “distinguished”, he said, underlining that Jordan plays an important role in developing relations and cooperation with China and countries in the region. Jordanian exports to China grew this year by 50 percent, the envoy said.


China and Arab states have nurtured the spirit of friendship featuring “solidarity and mutual assistance, equality, and mutual benefit, and inclusiveness and mutual learning.”


As strategic partners, China and Arab states should carry forward the spirit of China-Arab friendship, strengthen solidarity and cooperation, and foster a closer China-Arab community with a shared future, he added.


The envoy said that Chinese President Xi Jinping proposed “eight major common actions” for China-Arab practical cooperation in the next three to five years during the summit.


‘Eight major common actions’


First, to support common action for development, in which the Chinese side will discuss with the Arab states the implementation of development cooperation assistance projects with a total value of 5 billion yuan (around $719 million) and include 30 qualified Arab states projects into the global development initiative project pool.


According to the demand from Arab states for production capacity, infrastructure, energy, and green finance, China will provide credit support, and infrastructure investment with higher-quality, and lower-cost by the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank.


According to the progress of the exchange of letters, tariffs will be lifted on 98 percent of the products of the least developed countries in Arab states.


Moreover, China will provide humanitarian and reconstruction assistance to Palestine, Yemen, Lebanon, Syria, and other countries.


The country strives to reach a trade volume of $430 billion in 2027 with Arab states, he added.


Second, joint action on food security, in which China underscored its commitment to helping Arab states enhance food security and comprehensive agricultural production capacity; jointly build five modern agricultural joint laboratories, carry out 50 agricultural technology cooperation demonstration projects, and send 500 agricultural technical experts to Arab states to help increase grain production and agricultural production efficiency; to establish a “green channel” for the export of high-quality agricultural and food products from Arab states to China.


Third, joint health action, in which China said it will work with Arab states to jointly build a public health science and technology cooperation center and a vaccine innovation and research and development cooperation alliance, implement five traditional Chinese medicine cooperation projects in Arab states, continue to send Chinese medical teams to work in Arab states, and perform 2,000 cases of free cataract surgery and other telemedicine health services.


Fourth, joint action on green innovation, in which China will work with Arab states to establish the China-Arab International Research Center on drought, desertification and land degradation, and to implement five South-South cooperation projects to address climate change; to use the China Fengyun Meteorological Satellite and the Beijing World Meteorological Center to support Arab states in disaster prevention and mitigation.


China is also willing to establish the China-Arab Beidou Application Industry Promotion Center to provide high-quality services for Arab states in the fields of transportation, precision agriculture, search and rescue, among others. Additionally, it will build a number of joint laboratories or research and development cooperation centers and provide 300 advanced and applicable technologies to the Arab states.


Fifth, joint action on energy security, in which China will work with Arab states to build a Sino-Arab Clean Energy Cooperation Center, and support Chinese energy companies and financial institutions to participate in renewable energy projects with a total installed capacity of more than 5 million kilowatts in Arab states, carry out energy technology research and development cooperation with Arab states, and strengthen energy policy coordination to promote the establishment of a fair, equitable, balanced and inclusive global energy governance system.


Sixth, dialogue among civilizations and joint action, in which China will invite 1,000 people from Arab states’ political parties, parliament, media, and think tanks to come to China for exchanges, promote cooperation between 500 Chinese and Arab cultural and tourism companies, and train 1,000 cultural and tourism talents for the country.


Furthermore, China and Arab states will work together on the translation of 50 audio and visual program cooperation projects, continue to strengthen the China-Arab Reform and Development Research Center, and enhance dialogue among civilizations and exchanges of experience in governance.


Seventh, young people should act together, in which the Chinese side will hold the China-Arab Youth Development Forum, launch the “China-Arab Universities 10+10 Cooperation Plan”, invite 100 young scientists from the Arab side to come to China for scientific research exchanges, invite 3,000 young people to participate in Sino-Arab cultural exchanges, and invite 10,000 Arab talents to participate in professional training in poverty alleviation, health, green development and other fields and promote the construction of more Luban workshops in Arab states.


Eighth, joint action on security and stability, in which the Chinese side will work with Arab states to strengthen strategic dialogues between defense departments and academics, deepen cooperation in areas such as maritime security, international peacekeeping, and professional technology, and expand joint exercises and personnel training, train 1,500 people for Arab states on network security.


China said it will also work with Arab states in implementing the “China-Arab Data Security Cooperation Initiative”, establish a China-Arab network information exchange mechanism, and strengthen exchanges and dialogues in areas such as data governance and network security.


The envoy stressed the importance of the Riyadh Declaration and joint efforts to build the Arab-Chinese community for a common future towards a new era, strengthen solidarity and cooperation between the Arab countries and China, support the achievement of the nation’s renaissance for each of them, promote peace and development in the region, preserve international justice and fairness, and to contribute to the establishment of a society common future for mankind.


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