The article of H.E Chen Weiqing, Ambassador of the People’s Republic of China to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia was first published in Arab News. For our readers, we are sharing the article published by Arab News here.

This year is the third time I am joining my Saudi friends to celebrate their National Day. The national days for Saudi Arabia and China are only a week apart, which doubles my joy every year.

To understand a country, one must understand its history and culture. I have paid many visits to Diriyah, and participated in the opening ceremony of Diriyah Gate, where I was attracted by the long-lasting history and splendid civilization of Saudi Arabia, and witnessed the brand new changes that took place in this ancient land with Saudi friends. In my opinion, Diriyah represents world cultural heritage, the origin of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the cornerstone of the bright future of this country.

This year marks the fifth anniversary of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030. In the past five years, Saudi Arabia has been marching forward to a brighter future, and embracing the world with an open heart. After I arrived in Saudi Arabia as the new Chinese ambassador, I visited several great development projects, such as NEOM and the Al-Soudah project. I also participated in the G20 series of events which were held here in Saudi Arabia, as well as the Future Investment Initiative Forum and Global AI Summit. At the same time, I have personally experienced the excellent job Saudi Arabia has done in response to the COVID-19 pandemic by actively promoting international cooperation and enhancing the green and sustainable development of the Kingdom and the region. I have been engaged with this new rhythm created by Vision 2030.

Since the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Saudi Arabia, the friendly and cooperative relations of the two countries have developed comprehensively and rapidly, with frequent high-level exchanges and the continuous deepening of cooperation in various fields. China and Saudi Arabia are close partners in the joint construction of the Belt and Road, and we also reached a broad consensus on the concept of building a community with a shared future for mankind.

For 20 consecutive years, Saudi Arabia has been China’s largest trading partner in West Asia and Africa. For seven consecutive years, China has been Saudi Arabia’s largest trading country. In 2020, Saudi Arabia was China’s largest crude oil supplier.

The world will be more harmonious and prosperous only when different countries, nations and civilizations respect each other, and engage in exchange and mutual learning. China and Saudi Arabia are models of practicing civilizational exchange and dialogue. Thanks to the personal efforts of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, Chinese language education in Saudi Arabia has developed rapidly and made obvious achievements.

An Arabic proverb says to choose a companion before the road(اختر الرفيق قبل الطريق). China is willing to continue to move forward side by side with Saudi Arabia and be a good partner to maintain world peace, strengthen dialogue and cooperation, and promote common development.

Hereby, I would like to extend my heartfelt congratulations to Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, and the government and people of Saudi Arabia. I wish the people of Saudi Arabia prosperity and progress, happiness and health, and wish the relations of our two countries greater development.

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