Published: Sat, July 21, 2018
People | By Leon Thompson

China, UAE announce new trade zone ahead of Xi visit

China, UAE announce new trade zone ahead of Xi visit

Among the projects agreed in the memorandums of understanding are building embassies and cultural centers, increasing cooperation in the energy, agriculture and e-commerce sectors, building a wholesale market for livestock, fisheries and farm produce and investing in the world's largest solar energy project.

Dubai Frame, Burj Khalifa and other key buildings mark the celebration of UAE-China week...


Ahead of Chinese President Xi Jinping's visit to the UAE, DP World announced the deal with the Zhejiang China Commodities City Group to build a "traders' market" in Dubai.

It is a great honor that Xi chooses the UAE as the first stop of his overseas trip after re-election as Chinese president, said the UAE leaders. The UAE is the gateway for about 60 percent of China's exports to the Middle East, and on its own accounts for around a quarter of total Arab trade with China.

The project is a part of China's "One Belt, One Road" infrastructure initiative, an ambitious plan to revive the ancient Silk Road trading routes with a global network of ports, roads and railways. Beijing has had to tread carefully, though, with Gulf Arab states like Saudi Arabia and the UAE, as China also has close ties with their rival Iran. On Thursday, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid tweeted that the UAE aims to double both of those numbers.

China, UAE announce new trade zone ahead of Xi visit
China, UAE announce new trade zone ahead of Xi visit

Before the trip, state-owned Abu Dhabi National Oil Company announced it had awarded US$1.6 billion in contracts to oil giant China National Petroleum Corporation, to conduct a massive offshore and onshore seismic survey.

"More than that, (we have) a strong political will to start a larger phase of cooperation", he added.

People from all walks of life in the UAE are eagerly looking forward to Xi's visit, which they think will be of historical significance and will help further promote the development of bilateral strategic relations in a forceful way, said the UAE leaders.

Emaar Properties, Dubai's top listed developer, plans to build the Middle East's biggest "Chinatown" shopping complex in the emirate and expand its Address hotel brand across China.

After the UAE, Xi will pay state visits to Senegal, Rwanda and South Africa, attend the 10th BRICS summit in Johannesburg, and visit Mauritius during a stopover.

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