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King Salman inks $65B deals with China

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Japan’s oil imports are heavily reliant on a stable Middle East

Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud has cancelled his state visit to the Maldives over the H1N1 outbreak in the island nation.

Xi, for his part, acknowledged the mutually beneficial respect between China and "Islamic countries", suggesting China would not mind a greater involvement in Middle Eastern affairs at all.

Wang said Sinopec was willing to work with Saudi Arabia closely on upstream exploration and development, oil field services, refining technology and engineering, according to the website.

"President Xi Jinping and King Salman are old friends", Zhang said.

For Saudi Aramco, the potential investments fit with its strategy to expand its refining and chemicals portfolio in its bid to diversify assets and secure long-term agreements for its oil.

- Saudi Aramco and Norinco Group signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to develop a refinery and chemical facilities in Panjin City. The state oil giant also signed an MOU with Aerosun Corp for the manufacture of thermoplastic pipes and components. He noted that Saudi-Chinese trade relationship has increased gradually over the years and the Kingdom has regained its position as the largest supplier of crude oil to China, citing data from the Chinese General Administration of Customs.

He said that more than 500 Saudi and Chinese businessmen attended the forum held in conjunction with Salman's visit.

China has had to tread a careful line, though, as it also has close relations with Iran.

Next week Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu visits China.

"This visit will push forward and continue to improve the quality of our relations and bear new fruit", Mr Xi said in comments in front of reporters.

The Maldives was to be the final stop in the monarch's ongoing Asian tour that has already taken him to Malaysia, Indonesia, China and Japan.

The meeting between the king and Xi comes at a time when China has reportedly been asked to play a bigger role in the Middle East, according to the South China Morning Post.

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