The Arab Federation for Digital Economy participated in the work of the tenth session of the Arab and Chinese Businessmen Conference in Riyadh, which was held under the patronage of His Royal Highness Prince Muhammad bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Crown Prince of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Prime Minister of Saudi Arabia, and was organized by the Saudi Ministry of Investment, and lasted for two days, in partnership With the General Secretariat of the League of Arab States, the Chinese Council for the Promotion of International Trade and the Union of Arab Chambers. The Arab Union for Digital Economy participated with a high-level delegation headed by His Excellency Major General Yahya bin Abdul Rahman bin Zahem, member of the Board of Directors.
The conference was inaugurated by His Highness Prince / Faisal bin Farhan bin Abdullah, Saudi Minister of Foreign Affairs, under the slogan “Cooperation for Prosperity”. In his speech at the conference, he affirmed that the conference is an opportunity to work on strengthening and consolidating the historical Arab-Chinese friendship, and work on building a common future towards a new era that benefits people and maintains peace and development in the world.
He said that the conference sheds light on how to achieve mutual agreement, exchange experiences and launch new opportunities for growth and investment, which would achieve prosperity, progress and prosperity for the peoples of the region and the world.
And he added that China is the largest trading partner of the Arab countries, with the total volume of trade exchange between the two sides reaching $430 billion in 2022, with a growth rate of 31% compared to 2021.
Saudi Investment Minister Khaled Al-Falih said that it is time for China to become a major strategic partner for development in the Arab region, and that there is a need during the coming period for Chinese investments with high added value.
Al-Falih said that the growth in trade exchange with China creates promising opportunities for investment, pointing out that foreign direct investment out of China has grown by 20% annually over the past decade, and the Arab world’s share of it amounted to only $23 million.
He added, “What we need in our major development phase is Chinese investments with high added value… in terms of manufacturing and logistical services, linking the region to each other, and linking the region to its surroundings in Africa, Europe and Asia, which is led by China today.”
In turn, His Excellency the Secretary-General of the League of Arab States, Ahmed Aboul Gheit, affirmed that the Kingdom’s hosting of this conference comes as a continuation of its successful efforts since the holding of the Arab-Chinese Summit during the year 2022 in Riyadh, indicating that the outcomes of that summit gave a new impetus to the Arab-Chinese cooperation in various fields.
He explained that the Arab-Chinese relations are historical through joint cooperation due to the desire of the Arab and Chinese sides to consolidate them at all levels, adding that the mechanism of this conference was the first mechanism established within the framework of the Arab-Chinese Cooperation Forum since its inception in 2004.
Aboul Gheit addressed the importance of this conference in introducing entrepreneurs to the available investment opportunities, which contribute to economic development in the Arab countries and China, as well as the future of investment and exploring the best ways to maximize the available and promising opportunities and capabilities for the Arab and Chinese sides.
The tenth session of the conference aimed at strengthening and documenting trade and economic cooperation between the Arab and Chinese business communities, and exploring intra-investment opportunities. In many sectors, most notably: technology, renewable energy, agriculture, real estate, minerals, supply chains, and others, in addition to a number of dialogue sessions and bilateral meetings, which will represent an unprecedented shift in the Arab-Chinese relations at the economic level, and their development to meet the aspirations of the leaders. Arab countries and China.
The conference agenda included 8 main dialogue sessions, 18 workshops, and private meetings with a number of important personalities participating in the event, which aim in their entirety to introduce initiatives and opportunities that play an important role in intensifying institutional cooperation between China and the Arab side, and strengthening joint economic relations today and in the near future. .
It witnesses the holding of specialized workshops to discuss a number of key topics. Such as supply chains for the oil and gas sectors, innovation and research partnerships, challenges and solutions for global commercial supply chains, mining, and food processing.