|Wang Yi Holds a Meeting with Foreign Ministers of GCC Countries|
On September 19, 2022 local time, State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi met with foreign ministers of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) in a group on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in New York. Foreign Minister Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud of Saudi Arabia which holds the current rotating presidency of the GCC, GCC Secretary General Nayef Falah Mubarak Al-Hajraf, Minister of State Khalifa Shaheen Almarar of the United Arab Emirates, Kuwaiti Foreign Minister Sheikh Ahmad Nasser Al-Mohammad Al-Sabah, Bahraini Foreign Minister Abdullatif bin Rashid Al Zayani, and representatives of Qatar and Oman were present at the meeting.
Wang Yi said, under the care and guidance of the leaders of China and the GCC, China-GCC relations have achieved sound, steady and comprehensive development, staying at the forefront of China's relations with Arab countries. China has remained the GCC's largest trading partner for a long time. Last year, the trade volume between China and GCC bucked the overall downward trend and rose by 44 percent. With fruitful practical cooperation in various fields and increasingly close people-to-people and cultural exchanges, China-GCC relations have set a fine example of cooperation between China and other developing countries. Under the current circumstances, China and GCC countries, as good friends, good partners and good brothers, should continue to help and support each other. China is ready to join hands with the GCC to consolidate mutual trust, deepen cooperation and elevate China-GCC relations to new heights.
Wang Yi said that China appreciates GCC countries for upholding justice on issues related to Taiwan, Xinjiang, Hong Kong, human rights and so on, and for understanding and supporting China's legitimate demands. China will continue the firm support for GCC countries in safeguarding their sovereignty, independence, security and stability. China will back the GCC's efforts to advance integration, and oppose interference in the internal affairs of GCC countries by any other country. China is ready to work with GCC countries to safeguard non-interference in internal affairs, which is a basic norm governing international relations, and defend the common interests of the developing countries.
GCC members said that China, as a permanent member of the UN Security Council and an important cooperative partner of the Gulf states, plays an important role in maintaining peace and stability in the region and the world and promoting global development. The GCC very much looks forward to the bright future of GCC-China relations, and stands ready to consolidate mutual trust, deepen practical cooperation in various fields, ensure food and energy security as well as the stability of supply chains, and jointly address global challenges. The GCC firmly adheres to the one-China policy and supports China in safeguarding national sovereignty and territorial integrity. Both the GCC and China uphold the principles of mutual respect and non-interference in internal affairs. The GCC is ready to continue strengthening communication and cooperation with China in international affairs, so as to maintain peace and stability and promote development and prosperity.
Wang Yi stressed that China fully supports the diversified economic development of GCC countries, and stands ready to seek greater synergy between the Belt and Road Initiative and the development strategies of GCC countries, constantly deepen cooperation in the areas of energy, infrastructure, finance, investment and high technology, expand people-to-people and cultural exchanges, and foster more cooperation highlights. China supports GCC countries in playing a greater role in international and regional affairs, and stands ready to step up communication and coordination with the GCC on multilateral platforms, jointly act on true multilateralism and maintain peace and stability in the region and the world.
The two sides agreed to make joint efforts to reach a common ground on the China-GCC Free Trade Agreement at an early date, so as to release positive signals and help each other achieve better development.
The two sides agreed to deepen strategic mutual trust, upgrade the bilateral relationship and speed up formulating a strategic cooperation plan for the next stage.
The two sides also exchanged views on the Iranian nuclear issue and the Yemeni issue, among others.