Traditionally a mere taker of crude from the Middle East, China is an increasingly key player in its production and wants more (MEES, 25 May).

Opening this week’s China-Arab States Cooperation Forum in Beijing, China’s President Xi Jinping pledged to provide $20bn worth of loans to facilitate economic reconstruction in the Arab world. Music to the ears of cash-strapped states struggling to rejuvenate their economies such as Iraq, Libya and Sudan. (CONTINUED - 1007 WORDS)