AMMAN, Sept. 15 (Xinhua) -- Jordan is keen to work with China to boost bilateral ties and strengthen coordination on international issues, says King Abdullah II.
"Our ties with China are deep-rooted and solid, and I personally have close friendly relations with Chinese leaders, current and former," he said to Xinhua ahead of a China visit that begins Sunday.
"We are interested in building on this relationship with the new Chinese leadership because China plays a vital role in promoting world peace and stability, and has an influential role in regional issues," added the king.
In the bilateral domain, the king said, Jordan hopes to attract more Chinese investment and tourists and to learn from China's expertise in industrial technology and development planning.
"We will work to open up more prospects for the private sector in both countries to promote trade, investment and tourism, especially that Jordan can provide a gateway for Chinese investors to access more than 1 billion consumers, taking advantage of Jordan's free trade agreements," he said.
During his four-day visit, he is also scheduled to attend the China-Arab States Expo to be held in the northwestern Chinese city of Yinchuan.
Meanwhile, the king added that he will discuss with the Chinese side such issues as the Syria crisis and the Middle East peace process, in which China has played a positive role.
"It was painful for us to see the use of chemical weapons against innocent civilians and children," he said, noting that the conflict in Syria has reached an unprecedented stage.
"We have long warned that a prolonged conflict in Syria would deepen violence and extremism, increase the chances of chemical weapons falling into the wrong hands, and turn the conflict into a regional one with sectarian dimensions," he said.
Jordan, he stressed, "will exert all efforts to reach an Arab and international consensus over a comprehensive political solution to the Syria crisis, which will bring an end to the threat of chemical weapons, fighting and violence."
"We believe that consensus on a comprehensive political solution that rejects sectarianism, maintains Syria's territorial integrity and protects the dignity of its people is the ideal solution to the crisis," he said.
Noting that currently more than half a million Syrian refugees are seeking shelter in Jordan, equivalent to nearly 10 percent of Jordan's total population, he urged the world to "double its efforts to enable Jordan to continue to carry out its humanitarian responsibilities toward the brotherly Syrians."
Asked about the Middle East peace process, the Jordanian leader said it is undergoing a "critical time," and urged all parties involved to refrain from unilateral acts that might hamper the efforts to bring the negotiators closer.
"It is also necessary to positively support the latest U.S. efforts, which have led to the re-launch of direct peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians over final status issues," he said.
"These efforts are supported by international and regional partners, and we need China's vital support, as the window is closing fast on the two-state solution," he stressed.