Saudi Arabia signed 14 Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs) with China, including the landmark deal to build a high-temperature coolant gas nuclear reactor, on the first day of Chinese President Xi Jinping’s visit to Riyadh, reported the Saudi Gazette. The other MoUs include a framework agreement for strategic cooperation between Aramco and the China National Petrochemical Company (SINOPEC).

Aramco has been in talks with China’s SINOPEC and CNPC discussing Saudi investments in the Asian country’s refineries, petrochemicals, and marketing, Reuters informed. Aramco Chairman, Khalid al-Falih, made the announcement during the official inauguration of the 400,000b/d Yasref oil refinery, itself a joint venture between Aramco and SINOPEC. In October, it had emerged that Aramco was trying to buy a stake in a CNPC refinery, rumored to be worth $1-$1.5b.

Further, an R&D agreement between Saudi Aramco and the Development Research Center of the Council of Government of the People’s Republic of China was also signed.

The Saudi King Salman took the opportunity to say that the two countries were striving to consolidate peace, both in the region and in the world, said Asharq Al-Awsat.

Hashim Yamani, President of King Abdullah City for Atomic and Renewable Energy, and Wang Shu Jin, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Chinese Nuclear Engineering Company, signed on behalf of each other’s countries in the presence of King Salman and President Xi Jinping.