Chinese President Xi Jinping begins a major diplomatic tour on Thursday. It will be his first trip overseas since his second term as president started in March.
President Xi’s first stop is the United Arab Emirates (UAE). He will be the first Chinese head of state to visit the country in 30 years. CGTN’s Yang Mingjiao spoke with the UAE’s Minister of Economy Sultan bin Saeed Al Mansoori about the importance of Xi’s visit.
When talking about China’s Belt and Road Initiative, Mansouri said the UAE enjoyed a good geographical location and perfect infrastructure. He added that the country will actively participate in the implementation of the proposal.
“I have been following the very, ambitious projects…we will be benefited from that,” he said.
Mansouri also said that China and the UAE have achieved fruitful results in economic cooperation under the Belt and Road Initiative. The UAE is one of the founding members of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank.
China is one of the top ten source countries in the UAE tourism market. In 2016, more than 870,000 Chinese came to the country.
“Trade between the two countries is growing at a very high percentage. 22 percent of China’s trade with all Arabia countries are coming from the UAE,” Mansoori said.
Mansouri also said the UAE is trying to diversify its economic structure, and he hopes China can participate more in the country’s economic reform.