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Riyadh dismisses suggestions that it is favouring closer ties with China over its traditional partnership with the US.
But, while Saudi Arabia does not want to undermine its relations with Washington, developing deeper links with Beijing makes strategic sense.
The trading relationship between Saudi Arabia and China is vital to both countries. China needs Saudi oil. It is the world’s second-biggest consumer of oil, accounting for around 13 per cent of global consumption. About one-fifth of Saudi Arabia’s crude oil exports – some 2 million barrels a day – go to China.
The already significant trading relationship could develop even further if China starts paying for its Saudi crude in Chinese yuan.
Selling a tranche of its cargos in yuan could achieve some useful policy objectives for the kingdom. It would strengthen Riyadh’s relationship with a key customer, pivot Saudi Arabia away from the US and shield it from the threat of sanctions targeting the dollar, while at the same time locking in resources and turbocharging China’s involvement in Vision 2030 projects.
But Riyadh must step carefully, so as to avoid antagonising Washington, something it does not want to do. Read our in-depth analysis on Saudi's relations with China in the May 2022 edition of MEED Business Review.
MEED's industry report this month turns the spotlight on construction contractors with our 2022 contractor ranking.
This year could be remembered as pivotal for the construction sector as market dynamics across the GCC force a rebalancing of the status quo among the region’s leading contracting companies.
May's 20-page Market Focus on the UAE, meanwhile, finds the country's budget heading for a bumper surplus.
We hope you enjoy the May 2022 edition of MEED Business Review.
Must-read sections in the May 2022 edition of MEED Business Review include:
> AGENDA: Riyadh turns to China as US relations strain
> PROJECTS: Chinese contractor activity sees marked rise in region
> KUWAIT: Government resignation paralyses Kuwait's oil sector
> LEBANON: Beirut faces crunch time for economic crisis
> OPINION: Gulf states are the winners in Ukraine
> MEED COMMENTS: Regional leaders boost cooperation / Turkish ties benefit Saudi construction
> INTERVIEW: Petrofac turns the corner in regional oil and gas
> MEED ECONOMIC ACTIVITY INDEX: Riyadh picks up regional economic reins
> MEED's 2022 CONSTRUCTION CONTRACTOR RANKING: Contracting market rebalances
> Bahrain's top 10 construction contractors
> Kuwait's top 10 construction contractors
> Oman's top 10 construction contractors
> Qatar's top 10 construction contractors
> Saudi Arabia's top 10 construction contractors
> UAE's top 10 construction contractors
> UAE MARKET FOCUS: Abu Dhabi puts on its business face
> LEGAL: UAE grey listing brings regulatory shift
> GULF PROJECTS INDEX: Gulf Projects Index shrinks in April
> MARCH 2022 CONTRACTS: Value of contract awards continues to slump
> BUSINESS OUTLOOK: Finance, oil and gas, construction, power and water contracts
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