China’s Sinopec clinched a “strategic” energy cooperation agreement with the UAE’s state-run Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC), the official WAM news agency reported Tuesday.
The agreement, inked on the sidelines of an energy conference in the United Arab Emirates capital, came two days after Saudi state oil giant Aramco inked a deal with the Chinese company to build an oil refinery in the Red Sea city of Yanbu that will process some 400,000 barrels per day.
The UAE-Chinese agreement will promote cooperation between the two nations on the production and storage of oil, and on issues pertaining to training and research, according to WAM.
The UAE and China also signed a memorandum of understanding on energy cooperation which focuses on new and renewable energy sources and paves the way for joint projects and research in the development of clean energy technologies.
The Saudi and UAE agreements were signed during Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao’s Gulf tour which will also take him to Qatar.
His trip comes as the West ups the stakes in its standoff with Iran, threatening to impose sanctions on the oil exports of the Islamic republic, which provides 11 percent of China’s oil imports.
Iran is the third largest provider of oil to China. Qatar and the UAE, although both major oil-producing states, do not yet figure among the top 10 oil exporters to Beijing.