China's Ambassador to Kuwait Wang Di stressed that the State of Kuwait has become a main trade partner of his country in the region.
The Kuwaiti-Chinese diplomatic relations were established on March 22, 1971, they were the first ties with a Gulf and an Arab country, he told KUNA in an interview on Tuesday on the occasion of 45th anniversary of the diplomatic relations.
Marking this occasion coincides with the celebrations of 55th anniversary of national day and 25th anniversary of the liberation day and 10th anniversary of His Highness the Amir's assumption to power, he said.
The relations between the two countries have been developing over 45 years in all fields, he said, adding that Kuwait was the first Arab country that established diplomatic relations with China.
Many achievements have been chalked up between the two sides, thanks to the support of the two countries' leaders and bilateral efforts of the two nations, he noted.
The ambassador expressed his full satisfaction over what has been achieved so far in terms of cooperation relations between the two countries, indicating that China looks forward to enhancing these relations with Kuwait in the future.
He expressed his country's gratitude to Kuwait for offering about USD one billion since 1982 as soft loans for carrying out development projects, stating that the State of Kuwait has invested so far about USD 10 billion in China.
Wang recalled his country's stance rejecting the Iraqi invasion, indicating that China supported international efforts aimed to liberate the State of Kuwait at that time.
The envoy noted that there is a great consensus between the two sides over the regional and international events, voicing China's appreciation to Kuwait's foreign policy in dealing with these events.
He affirmed that the two countries have similar foreign policies, mainly rejecting interference into countries' domestic affairs, finding political solutions to problems through dialogue and negotiations, and helping nations determine their destinies.
He stressed the importance of combating terrorism describing it as a "scourge" from which the world is suffering, calling for supporting international efforts so as to address the causes of the phenomenon.
As for economic cooperation, Wang said Kuwait is an important partner of China in all fields, mainly the sectors of oil, telecommunications and infrastructure.
The volume of trade exchange between Kuwait and China reached about USD 11.2 billion in 2015 compared with USD 13.4 billion in 2014, he said, attributing this decrease to falling oil prices.
He indicated that oil exports to China hit 14 million tons, recording 35 percent of total exports, a highest percentage in history between the two sides.
He said Kuwait exports petrochemicals to China and imports mechanical equipment. Concerning new investment projects, the ambassador reiterated that China eyes further investments with Kuwait, despite difficult economic conditions facing the world.
He went to say that Chinese President launched two years ago an initiative to build the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st-Century Maritime Silk Road, with the aim of supporting communications with nations and countries in the region.
Wang added that the Kuwaiti leader was interested in reviving the Silk Road, indicating that a cooperation document was signed between Kuwait and China during the visit of His Highness Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber Al-Mubarak Al-Hamad Al-Sabah in 2014 on participating in establishing the Silk City and Silk Road.
Asked about a possibility of opening branches of Chinese banks in Kuwait, he emphasized that this move will take place as soon as many major companies enter the Kuwaiti market.