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Wen ends visits to Belgium, EU headquarters
Updated: 2004-05-07 10:43

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao Thursdayafternoon left Brussels for Italy, ending his two-day official visit to Belgium and the headquarters of the European Union (EU).

On Thursday morning, Wen held talks with European Commission (EC) President Romano Prodi, vowing to further consolidate and develop the all-around strategic partnership between China and thebloc.

The premier put forward a five-point proposal for boosting China-EU relations:

-- To enhance discussions on strategic issues between Chinese and European leaders;

-- To expand China-EU economic and technological cooperation;

-- To consolidate legal and safeguarding mechanisms for cooperation between the two sides;

-- To boost communications and dialogue between the parliaments,academic organizations, research institutes and media organizations from the two sides; and

-- To improve consultation mechanisms on settling disputes and differences arising from bilateral ties, including those related to trade and human rights.

Prodi extended a warm welcome to Wen on his first visit to theexecutive arm of the EU, noting that relations between the EU and China have gone far beyond the rapid-expansion of economic and trade relations between the two.

The EC boss vowed to take concrete steps to promote the EU-China strategic partnership. As mutual strategic partners, both the EU and China will make their own contribution to world peace and stability.

After the talks, officials from the two sides signed five cooperation documents including an agreement on cooperation and mutual administrative assistance in customs matters, the China-EU Trade Policy Dialogue, the China-EU Competition Policy Dialogue, the China-EU Textiles Trade Dialogue and the Joint Declaration on Galileo Cooperation.

A day earlier, Wen also met with EU security and foreign policychief Javier Solana.

On Wednesday, Wen held talks with Belgian Prime Minister Guy Verhofstadt who together signed a joint declaration on reinforcingpolitical dialogue and the Articles of Association of the China-Belgium Equity Investment Fund, a fund to encourage medium-sized and small Belgian firms to invest in China.

The premier also met with several other Belgian leaders on Wednesday and delivered a speech at a forum on China-EU investmentand trade on Thursday morning, noting that China will generate enormous business opportunities for business communities of the EU.

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