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Chinese premier, Australian PM to meet annually

Xinhua | Updated: 2013-04-09 23:11

BEIJING - Chinese premier and Australian prime minister will from now on meet annually, Li Keqiang and Julia Gillard announced on Tuesday, following their hour-long talk in Beijing's Great Hall of the People.

"China would like to work with Australia to maintain high-level visits, enhance strategic trust and establish and substantiate a strategic partnership based on mutual trust and common prosperity, " Li said.

The Chinese premier and Gillard also decided to establish diplomatic and strategic dialogue, strategic economic dialogue and other mechanisms to promote communication and cooperation in multilateral ways.

On the economic front, Li proposed stronger finance and currency cooperation, citing a new agreement to allow the Chinese and Australian currencies to trade directly.

The premier called for multiple means of cooperation in minerals and husbandry and expanded collaboration in rail, ports and telecoms.

Li also urged quickened negotiations on a China-Australia Free Trade Agreement.

On people-to-people exchanges, he proposed deepening exchanges in culture, education, science and technology, tourism and other sectors, while encouraging study exchanges among young people of the two countries.

China and Australia should enhance communication and coordination in multilateral organizations like the United Nations, G-20 and APEC, according to Li.

Gillard said the establishment of a Australia-China strategic partnership marked the upgrade of bilateral relations.

She said Australia would like to work with China to implement dialogue mechanisms, step up macro policy coordination, promote mutual trust and make contributions to peace, stability and prosperity in Asia and the Pacific.

After the talks, Li and Gillard witnessed the signing of a series of agreements covering recyclable energy, financing, drug control and development aid.

Before her stop in Beijing, the Australian PM also attended the Boao Forum for Asia Annual Conference 2013, which took place from Saturday to Monday in south China's island province of Hainan.

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