|Li Keqiang Meets with Crown Prince Salman Bin Abdul-Aziz Al-Saud, First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defence of Saudi Arabia|
In the afternoon of March 14, 2014, Chinese Premier of the State Council Li Keqiang met with the Crown Prince Salman Bin Abdul-Aziz Al-Saud, the First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defence of Saudi Arabia in Ziguangge, Zhongnanhai.
Li Keqiang said that Saudi Arabia is China's important strategic cooperation partner in the Middle East and the Gulf region. The two countries uphold the common ideas of safeguarding world peace, respect each other for the development path they chose by their own national conditions, and play constructive roles in international and regional affairs. China is willing to have closer high-level exchanges with Saudi Arabia, to strengthen energy cooperation, to advance cooperation in fields of infrastructure, such as railway and nuclear power, and to make closer and more frequent personnel exchanges, for further consolidating and deepening China-Saudi Arabia strategic friendly relations.
Li Keqiang pointed out, China attaches great importance to developing relations with all member countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC). We are glad to see and appreciate that the GCC Council of Foreign Ministers approved recently the assessment report on the foreign free trade area (FTA) negotiation and listed China as the prior negotiating partner. China is willing to work together with Saudi Arabia and other GCC member countries to seize this opportunity to resume the China-GCC FTA negotiations as soon as possible, and try to achieve a high-level, mutually beneficial and win-win agreement, so as to comprehensively enhance China-Saudi Arabia and China-GCC economic and trade cooperation.
Salman said that China is an important friend and partner of Saudi Arabia, and both countries share extensive common interests and very close bilateral relations. Saudi Arabia attaches great importance to developing relations with China, and is ready to deepen mutually beneficial cooperation with China in all fields, make closer and more frequent personnel exchanges and work together to safeguard the regional and world peace, stability and development. Saudi Arabia welcomes Chinese enterprises to invest in the country, and will provide necessary facilitation and support. The GCC member countries are all looking forward to expanding cooperation with China, and Saudi Arabia will continue to play a positive role in promoting the building of the GCC-China FTA and strengthening the GCC-China cooperation.