Chinese President Hu Jintao has begun a three-day trip to Saudi Arabia aimed at strengthening ties between China and its main oil supplier. China's growing thirst for oil has helped push crude prices above $75 a barrel in New York for the first time. President Hu flew straight to Riyadh on Saturday from Washington, where he met US President George W Bush. Saudi Arabia is opening its economy to the outside world and is eyeing new export opportunities in Asia.
The kingdom joined the World Trade Organisation in December. A month later, King Abdullah headed a large delegation to China to help develop Saudi trade links with Asian economies. Saudi Arabia was China's top oil supplier in 2005, providing 17.5% of its imports with 443,600 barrels per day. President Hu visited the headquarters of Saudi industrial giant Saudi Basic Industries Corp, and discussed plans for a $5.2bn (£2.9bn) refinery and petrochemical project in north-eastern China. Saudi Arabia and China signed defence, security and trade agreements on the first day of the presidential visit.
BBCLast Mod: 20 Eylül 2018, 18:16