Saudi Arabia joins SCO, continues pivot toward the East
The Kingdom's decision comes one day after Saudi Crown Prince and China's leader held a phone call emphasizing the need for stronger relations.
Saudi Arabia's King Salman authorized during a Cabinet session on Wednesday a memorandum of understanding to grant the Arab country the status of a dialogue partner in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO).
He also approved the signing of an MOU between the Kingdom and China on technical and vocational training.
- Combined efforts -
The decision comes one day after China's President Xi Jinping held a phone call with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, during which Xi said that China plans to maintain strong collaboration with Saudi Arabia on matters important for both countries, strengthening practical cooperation and humanitarian exchange.
According to China Central Television, Xi also showed a willingness to combine efforts with Saudi Arabia to promote peace and stability in the Middle East, as well as development in the region.
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Bin Salman also congratulated the Chinese President on his re-election as the chairman of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) earlier in March.
Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince added that his country considers the development of its relationship with China very important and is ready to work for new horizons of mutual partnership.
- Historic event -
The ties between China and Saudi Arabia have developed after Xi's official visit to Riyadh in December, the first in six years, to attend the Riyadh-China Arab summit for cooperation and Development.
King Salman bin Abdulaziz and Chinese President Xi Jinping signed then a comprehensive strategic partnership agreement between the two countries, marking a historic geopolitical event between Asia and West Asia.
The visit resulted in around 20 deals signed by both governments spanning several fields and sectors.
The two sides also signed a number of bilateral agreements and memorandums of understanding, including a plan to align the kingdom's Vision 2030 with the Chinese Belt and Road Initiative.
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