Riyadh, 12 December 2022 (TDI): The first China-Arab States Summit was held on 9 December, in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. At this summit, Chinese President Xi Jinping delivered a keynote speech.

The speech was entitled as “Carrying Forward the Spirit of China-Arab Friendship and Jointly Building a China-Arab Community with a Shared Future in the New Era”.

President Xi emphasized that there has been a long history of friendly relations between China and Arab nations. They should uphold the spirit of friendship as strategic partners.

Also, they should develop their bonds of cooperation and work to create a more unified China-Arab community with a shared future. Moreover, Xi underscored that China is prepared to strengthen its strategic partnership with Arab nations.

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They want to defend each other’s sovereignty, territorial integrity, and national dignity. Cooperation in the areas of trade, infrastructure development, and energy was also highlighted.

China urges the international community to respect the Middle Eastern people’s rights as they are in charge of their own lives. Additionally, Xi said to contribute positively to the security and stability of the area.

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Moreover, President Xi underlined that the two sides must promote the sharing of government experience, strengthen people-to-people ties, and increase personnel exchange.

Also, both should work together to counter Islamophobia, and deradicalization, and reject linking terrorism to any particular racial or religious group.

Eight Major Cooperation Initiatives

During this keynote speech, Xi Jinping highlighted that China will work with the Arab side to advance eight major cooperation initiatives in various areas.

These include development assistance, food security, public health, green innovation, energy security, inter-civilizational dialogue, youth development, security, and stability.

Furthermore, the speech underlined that it is not acceptable to continue to ignore the historical wrongs committed against the Palestinian people.

Xi said that China will continue to support Palestine’s livelihood programmes and offer humanitarian aid to the nation. During the summit, a historic turning point in China-Arab ties was reached.

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Both governments decided to create a China-Arab community with a shared future in the new era. In this regard, Arab leaders present at the summit actively echoed Xi’s important speech.

However, the Summit issued the “Outline of the Comprehensive Cooperation Plan Between the People’s Republic of China and the Arab States.”

Also, a document on “Deepening the Sino-Arab Strategic Partnership for Peace and Development” was issued.

In addition, several cooperation agreements have also been signed in the areas of energy, food, investment, green development, security, and aerospace.