In this July 15, 2021 photo, Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi (right) meets with Saudi Arabian Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud in Tashkent, Uzbekistan. (CAI GUODONG / XINHUA)
BEIJING – Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi on Sunday held a phone conversation with Saudi Arabian Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud over bilateral ties and cooperation.
Wang said that in the face of the volatile international situation, China and Saudi Arabia need to maintain close strategic communication, which is an inherent part of the comprehensive strategic partnership between the two countries.
In recent years, under the personal care and strategic guidance of the two heads of state, bilateral relations have continued to develop, Wang said.
Noting that China always gives priority to its relations with Saudi Arabia in its diplomacy in the Middle East, Wang said that China is willing to be a long-term reliable and stable good friend and partner to Saudi Arabia, and looks forward to working with Saudi Arabia to push bilateral relations to a higher and deeper level.
China appreciates Saudi Arabia's firm stand with China on issues concerning China's core interests, and will, as always, firmly support Saudi Arabia in safeguarding its national sovereignty, security and stability, and resolutely oppose any interference in Saudi Arabia's internal affairs, Wang said.
China will continue to support Saudi Arabia's Vision 2030, Green Saudi Arabia and Green Middle East initiatives, and actively participate in major development projects in Saudi Arabia, Wang said, adding that China is ready to work with Saudi Arabia to synergize the Belt and Road Initiative with Saudi Arabia's Vision 2030 and push for more results in bilateral cooperation in such fields as energy, infrastructure, investment and 5G.
China is ready to take the opportunity of the 40th anniversary of China-Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) relations to conclude negotiations on a China-GCC free trade agreement at an early date, Wang said.
China will continue to play a constructive role in promoting the negotiations on resuming the implementation of the Iran nuclear deal
Wang Yi, Foreign Minister, China
China appreciates Saudi Arabia's active preparations for the China-Arab summit, and is willing to maintain communication with Saudi Arabia and start preparations for the summit in due course.
Wang also said that China upholds an objective and just position on the Iranian nuclear issue, and is committed to upholding the international nuclear non-proliferation regime as well as security and stability in the Middle East and the Gulf region without any selfish interests or geopolitical considerations.
China understands and supports Saudi Arabia's legitimate concern for safeguarding national security, Wang said, adding that the comprehensive agreement on the Iranian nuclear issue is an important achievement of multilateralism.
China will continue to play a constructive role in promoting the negotiations on resuming the implementation of the Iran nuclear deal, he added.
For his part, Faisal said the Saudi-China relationship is very important and is developing very well, adding that Saudi Arabia always regards China as a truly credible strategic partner, and is willing to work with China to deepen all-round bilateral cooperation in various fields.
Expressing gratitude to China for opposing external interference in Saudi Arabia's internal affairs, he said that Saudi Arabia also firmly opposes any interference in China's internal affairs, which is a principle Saudi Arabia has always defended.
Saudi Arabia looks forward to holding the first Arab-China summit next year and believes that the summit will become an important milestone in the history of Arab-China relations, he said.
Saudi Arabia attaches great importance to and will actively promote the negotiations on the free trade agreement between the GCC and China, believing that this is in the common interests of both sides, he noted.
Faisal also said that Saudi Arabia attaches great importance to China's unique role on the Iranian nuclear issue, and expects China to play an important role in promoting the resumption of the Iran nuclear deal and the comprehensive and lasting settlement of the Iranian nuclear issue.
The two sides also had an in-depth exchange of views on international and regional issues of common concern.
HONG KONG NEWS