China to step up free trade talks with Middle East

December 30, 2014 2:30 AM

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BEIJING (Reuters) - China will speed up free trade talks with six countries on the Arabian peninsula and begin trade negotiations with Israel next year, state media said on Tuesday, as Beijing accelerates efforts to sign such agreements.

China and members of the Gulf Cooperation Council - Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates - started free trade talks in 2004, and a deal will help China cut costs on energy imports from the region, the official China Daily said.

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