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Xi Jinping Holds Talks with Emir Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani of Qatar and Two Heads of State Together Announce to Establish China-Qatar Strategic Partnership

On November 3, 2014, President Xi Jinping held talks with Emir Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani of Qatar at the Great Hall of the People. The two heads of state jointly announced to establish China-Qatar strategic partnership and promote bilateral practical cooperation to a higher level.

Xi Jinping pointed out that Qatar is an important country with unique influence in the Gulf region of the Middle East, and also China's important cooperative partner in the region. During your visit this time, we both decided to uplift the bilateral relations to strategic partnership, which is a vital milestone, and we should well plan bilateral all-round cooperation from a strategic height.

Xi Jinping stressed that China supports Qatar's sovereignty and territorial integrity, its efforts in safeguarding national security and stability and its unique role in regional affairs. China welcomes Qatar to take part in building the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road, and is willing to establish an energy partnership integrating up and down streams and featuring long-term stability with Qatar, and meanwhile expand cooperation in all fields such as infrastructure construction, telecommunications and finance, push mutual investment and study joint investment in the third country. Both sides should enhance exchanges between the two armies and cooperation in security and law enforcement, and work together to combat terrorism. Qatar will soon take rotating presidency of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), and it is hoped that Qatar could speed up the negotiation on China-GCC free trade area. China supports the holding of China-Qatar Cultural Year in 2016 to push forward bilateral people-to-people and cultural exchanges.

Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani expressed that Qatar highly values developing Qatar-China strategic partnership. He invites President Xi Jinping to pay a state visit to Qatar at an early date. The proposal of building the "One Belt One Road" put forward by President Xi Jinping has offered important opportunities for bilateral cooperation in energy, infrastructure construction and other areas. Qatar will expand natural gas export to China and actively participate in the preparatory work for establishing the Asia Infrastructure Investment Bank as a founding member, and welcomes Chinese enterprises to invest the large-scale projects under construction in Qatar. Qatar will firmly dedicate to pushing for an early conclusion of the negotiation on the GCC-China free trade area. Qatar hopes to enhance counter-terrorism cooperation with China. Qatar will work with China to well organize activities of the Qatar-China Cultural Year in 2016 and deepen friendship between the two peoples. Qatar highly appreciates that China has actively supported and participated in the international community to fight against the Ebola epidemic and stands ready to carry out cooperation with China.

When talking about the situation in the Middle East, Xi Jinping noted that there are multiple hotspots and intertwined contradictions in the Middle East, and the political solution is the only realistic way out to neutralize differences and resolve disputes. No matter how difficult the situation is, we should keep maximum patience to provide maximum room for a political solution. The Middle East boasts unique history and tradition, and regional countries and peoples have the biggest say on what development path they should follow. The international community should support them to independently explore development paths conforming to their own national conditions.

Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani said that Qatar appreciates China's long-term objective and just stance in the international community and stands ready to join efforts with China to safeguard regional security and stability.

Following the talks, the two heads of state together witnessed the signing of cooperative documents in such fields as "One Belt One Road", finance, education and culture. Both sides also issued the joint declaration on establishing the strategic partnership between China and Qatar.

Prior to the talks, Xi Jinping held a welcome ceremony for Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani in the North Hall of the Great Hall of the People. Vice Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress Chen Changzhi, State Councilor Yang Jiechi, Vice Chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference Chen Yuan and others attended the welcome ceremony.

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