Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid and Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Abu Dhabi. Image Credit: Twitter / Dubai Media Office

Abu Dhabi: President Xi Jinping of the People's Republic of China arrived here on Thursday on a three-day state visit to the UAE accompanied by First Lady Peng Liyuan.

His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, and His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, received the distinguished guests and his accompanying delegation at the Presidential Flight.

Upon his arrival, President Xi Jinping was accorded an official reception ceremony including the playing of the national anthem of China and a 21-gun salute.

Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid and Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed welcomed the Chinese President, expressing their happiness at his visit to the UAE and hoping that such a visit would establish a new stage of cooperation and joint work to serve the interests of both nations.

Watch: The UAE dispatched fighter jets to escort the Xi’s plane as soon as it entered the country’s airspace

The UAE leaders and President Xi exchanged cordial talks about shared historical relations, which have seen a unique development and improvement on all levels.

Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid tweets in Chinese

Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed and Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid highlighted the significant role that China plays in regional and international political and economic issues and the pillars of understanding, coordination and consultation with the UAE to serve security, peace and development in the region and the world.

Portraits of the leaders were displayed on the screen on the building of Adnoc headquarters in Abu Dhabi on the occasion of the visit by Chinese President to UAE. (Abdul Rahman/Gulf News) 

"The UAE today welcomed the Chinese President Xi Jinping on his first overseas visit after being re-elected as president of China. We value this visit and consider it historic, as it establishes a new strategic stage in the relations of both countries” Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid has tweeted.

“The UAE accounts for about a quarter of the Arab trade with China, with nearly Dh 200 billion in 2017 and the UAE welcomed more than 1 million Chinese tourists in 2017. We have partnerships in various sectors including oil, renewable energy, and infrastructure as well as technology. We seek to double these figures in the coming period,” he continued.

“The UAE is the first Gulf country to have strategic relations with China. There is consensus between the UAE and China in many regional and international issues. We seek to consolidate cultural, popular and human relations, in addition to our strong economic and political relations,” Shaikh Mohammad further said on twitter.




Watch: Welcome gate in Abu Dhabi for Chinese President Xi Jinping’s visit to the United Arab Emirates.  

“We are pleased with the Chinese President visit to the UAE. A historic visit by all standards and heralds  a new stage of cooperation between the two countries in all fields, which will bring prosperity, development and prosperity to the peoples of the two countries” Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed said on his twitter page.

“The UAE and China shares many interests including peace, stability, development, investment and preparation for the future. Our long-standing relationship and partnership comes in response to the changes and development requirements of both countries. , Our confidence in President Xi’s vision and building on his historic visit is a major milestone for our common goals”, Shaikh Mohammad also tweeted.

For his part, the Chinese President expressed his happiness to visit the UAE, with which  China share friendly relations and a common vision on many issues, wishing the UAE further growth, progress and prosperity.

“In response to the kind invitation of President His Highness Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, I am very pleased to visit the UAE. On this occasion, I would like to extend, on behalf of the Chinese Government and people, our sincere greetings and good wishes to the Government and the people of the UAE, the Chinese President said.

“The UAE has always been outpacing the Middle East countries in terms of economic diversification, tolerance and social openness. It is an ideal model for development and prosperity in the Arab world and plays a positive role in maintaining and promoting peace and stability in the region since the establishment of diplomatic relations 34 years ago.

China and the UAE have always dealt with one another based on respect and equality. The bilateral relations have seen great development and the practical cooperation in all fields has achieved fruitful results” President Xi added .

Present at the reception ceremony were Shaikh Hazza Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Chairman of Abu Dhabi Executive Council, Lt. General Shaikh Saif Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior, Shaikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs, and Shaikh Abdullah Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, as well as other ministers and top officials.


Earlier report from Samir Salama, Associate Editor: 

President Xi’s visit features a series of high-level meetings aimed at strengthening ties between the two countries with a view to beginning a new phase of long-term, mutually beneficial, co-operation.

President Xi is scheduled to visit Louvre Abu Dhabi and cultural exchange is an important part of the visit.

The Adnoc headquarters in Abu Dhabi is illuminated with the Chinese flag. Abdul Rahman/Gulf News

His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, welcomed Chinese President Xi Jinping in this “historic visit that celebrates the strategic partnership between the two countries and establishes a new phase of fruitful co-operation and promising outlooks”.

“The UAE currently hosts 200,000 Chinese citizens and 4,000 trading companies. We seek to build long-term economic, cultural, and trade and investment ties with China. We are happy to celebrate China’s rich and continued historical culture on an annual basis,” Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid said in an earlier statement.

His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, said the UAE and China play a pivotal role in the stability of the region and its economic future.

“Over 28 years ago, the late Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan visited China, founded the strategic relationship between the two countries that has yielded fruitful trade and investment as well as cultural relations for more than three decades,” Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed added.

“China is an international commercial giant with a global political weight playing an active role in stabilising the global economy and attaining peace and security,” Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed said.

The UAE-China Week, running from July 17 to 24, coincides with the Chinese president’s visit and is aimed at placing a spotlight on the relations between the two nations, and to enhance trade cooperation and cultural exchange. Chinese cinema, literature, fashion and art are celebrated as part of events at Manarat Al Saadiyat.

King Abdul Aziz street in Abu Dhabi is decorated with the national flags of the UAE and China. Abdul Rahman/Gulf News

The UAE will celebrate UAE-China Week annually, coinciding with Chinese New Year celebrations.

An economic forum will be held in the capital on Friday evening, which will be attended by Sultan Bin Saeed Al Mansouri, Minister of Economy, and his Chinese counterpart Zhong Shan.

Recent years have witnessed a rapid growth in the UAE-China economic partnerships, with the annual trade volume between the two countries exceeding $50 billion, making the UAE for successive years the second largest trading partner of China.

Dr Sultan Ahmad Al Jaber, Minister of State, said our relationship with China is a long-term strategic one that encompasses a multitude of aspects — political, economic, cultural, social, tourism, among others.

He added the UAE-China relationship is rooted in the principles of mutual respect, constructive dialogue and meaningful cooperation to achieve their common interests in a variety of sectors.

Dr Al Jaber, also chairman of the National Media Council, said the strategic cooperation between the UAE and the People’s Republic of China aims to realise the interests of both countries across an array of fields, including politics, economy, trade, energy, technology, culture and tourism.

He stressed that there is already tangible, substantive cooperation between the two countries in the energy sector, with a significant number of projects and initiatives already under way between the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc) and Chinese energy companies.