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Premier urges Sino-French trade co-op
Updated: 2004-10-10 20:45

China and France should further cement their economic and trade cooperation, said Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao Sunday at a meeting with visiting French President Jacques Chirac.

Wen said bilateral economic and trade cooperation boasts vast potentials and broad prospects, and both sides should strengthen the cooperation in energy, communication, agriculture and environmental protection.

They should also establish and improve the mechanism of cooperation between their small-and medium-sized enterprises, and expand new- and high-tech cooperation spheres, noted Wen.

He stressed that the Chinese side attaches importance to Sino- French relations and has always treated bilateral ties from a strategic height, hoping both sides will continue pushing forward bilateral relationship.

He characterized bilateral relations as the most stable politically, the most in-depth economically, and the closest in cooperation in international affairs, saying that bilateral all- round strategic partnership is being consolidated and advanced.

Wen said China and France share identical or similar stands on many major international issues, citing that the Declaration on Dialogue among Cultures and Civilizations, which was proposed by China and France and adopted at the just-closed summit of the fifth Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM), has won favorable echoes from leaders of different countries attending the meeting.

Wen said under the current circumstances, it is of pragmatic significance for different countries to respect diversified civilizations and hold dialogues in this regard, stressing that different civilizations can co-exist peacefully.

Chirac said it is of great importance to strengthen dialogues among cultures and civilizations, and the fifth ASEM summit will play an important pushing role in enhancing mutual understanding and closer cooperation between Europe and Asia.

Chirac expressed his hope for more bilateral cooperation in nuclear energy, aviation, railway, agriculture and environmental protection, stressing that rapidly developing China has provided great opportunities for bilateral overall cooperation.

Chirac is here for a five-day state visit to China at the invitation of Chinese President Hu Jintao.

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