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Top Legislator Meets Vietnamese, Singaporean PM
    2008-10-23 17:51:17     Xinhua

Chinese top legislator Wu Bangguo met respectively with visiting Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung and Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on Thursday.


Dung and Lee are here for the seventh Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) to be held from Oct 24 to 25 in Beijing.


Wu, chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress, hailed the development of Sino-Vietnamese relations in recent years, saying the two countries witnessed strengthening political mutual trust, expanding economic and trade cooperation and frequent exchanges between political parties.


"When profound changes are taking place in international and regional situation, to strengthen bilateral relations is in the fundamental interest of both China and Vietnam," Wu said.


He said the Chinese side attaches high importance to relations with Vietnam, and will work with it to grasp the bilateral relations from a strategic and overall point of view, increase mutually beneficial cooperation, and promote a sound and stable development of the Sino-Vietnamese comprehensive strategic partnership of cooperation.


Dung said China's development is conducive to regional peace, development and cooperation. Vietnam values the traditional friendship with China, and good bilateral relations are in the interest of both sides.


He said Vietnam will actively promote bilateral cooperation in such areas as economy and trade, technology and culture with China, and promote in-depth development of bilateral relations.


In the meeting with Lee, the two sides discussed the current global financial turmoil.


"Facing the financial crisis triggered by the U.S. credit crunch, China will strengthen cooperation with the international community including Singapore to maintain international financial stability and economic stability," Wu said.


Lee said though the world economy is facing a tough situation, China has sent an important signal to the world by continuing to push forward free trade and opening-up to the outside.


No country could cope with the current financial crisis by itself. Singapore will keep close coordination with China and contribute to the easing of the global financial difficulties, the prime minister said.


As for the development of Sino-Singaporean relations, Wu said the two countries had close exchanges between their leaders, active people-to-people exchanges, fruitful economic cooperation and good exchanges and coordination in international and regional affairs.


"The free trade agreement (FTA) the two countries signed today will further promote bilateral trade and economic cooperation," Wu said.


The FTA was signed Thursday morning after talks between Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao and Lee. Trade between the two countries reached 47.15 billion U.S. dollars in 2007. Singapore is China's eighth largest trade partner and the seventh largest investor.


Wu said China attaches high importance to relations with Singapore, and will join hands with it to further promote the bilateral relations.


Lee echoed Wu as saying that he was satisfied with the development of bilateral relations. With the signing of the FTA, the trade and economic cooperation between Singapore and China will enter a new stage, and will promote strongly the bilateral relations as well as cooperation between China and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.



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