China as mediating power: the deal between Iran and Saudi Arabia

Tehran and Riyadh have a terrible background and have been involved in a proxy conflict for years. China was able to broker the agreement between the two countries, which was announced on 10 March.

The agreement reached between Iran and Saudi Arabia is a geopolitical shift in the Gulf Region. It is also a major success for China’s diplomacy, which starts shaping a new role of mediator in global conflicts.

China’s emerging role in the Saudi-Iran rivalry reflects a broader re-adjustment of Beijing’s foreign policy towards a more proactive global role.

China balances its relations with Iran and Saudi Arabia by offering different goods to each partner, but this has exposed the limits of China’s diplomacy from the sideline.

The agreement includes reappointing ambassadors within two months following an imminent meeting between the foreign ministers of both countries.

The agreement is a big win for the region and beyond and has opened the door for further bilateral and multilateral arrangements and agreements in the near future.

The deal could be a precursor of Chinese mediation between Kyiv and Moscow in the future.