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China Wants to Be a Big Player in the Middle East

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi’s latest six-nation tour of the Middle East and Turkey revealed that Beijing now aims to play a much larger role in the region.

During his trip, Wang signed a high-profile strategic cooperation agreement with Iran, announced a major vaccine production deal with the United Arab Emirates, and brought China’s message on Xinjiang to Saudi Arabia, home of Islam’s two holiest sites in Mecca and Medina.

Zayed University Assistant Professor and Atlantic Council Senior Fellow Jonathan Fulton is among the world’s foremost China-Mideast scholars and closely followed Wang’s trip. He joins Eric & Cobus from Abu Dhabi to discuss the outcomes of the recent tour and China’s broader ambitions in the Middle East.

Show Notes:

About Jonathan Fulton:

Jonathan Fulton is an Assistant Professor of Political Science in the College of Humanities and Social Sciences at Zayed University, in Abu Dhabi, UAE.  He received his PhD in International Relations from the University of Leicester, UK, where his dissertation focused on China’s relations with the Gulf Cooperation Council member states.  He has written widely on China-Middle East relations for both academic and popular publications.  He is the author of the China’s Relations with the Gulf Monarchies and co-editor of External Power and the Gulf Monarchies.

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