North Ireland Eager to Expand China Market to Invigorate Its Economy
    2013-05-14 04:29:47     Xinhua      Web Editor: Mao Yaqing
North Ireland of Britain has expressed strong desire to strength relations with China and extend bilateral cooperation in many fields such as science and tourism.

North Ireland of Britain has expressed strong desire to strength relations with China and extend bilateral cooperation in many fields such as science and tourism.

North Ireland First Minister Peter Robinson and Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness are expected to visit Beijing from 27 to 31 of May after a six-day visit to Shanghai and Hong Kong in November last year.

They are also planning another economic mission to China in June.

"We hopes to further strengthen our relationship and share best practice in science and research, medicine, sustainable development, education, culture and sport with China," Tim Losty, director of international relations of the Office of the First Minister and Deputy First Minister, told Xinhua.

The coming visit of the first minister and deputy first minister to Beijing followed on the invitation of Chinese Vice Premier Liu Yandong who visited Northern Ireland in April last year, according to Losty.

During their stay in Beijing, they may have a series of meeting with Chinese government ministers, said Losty.

"Our ministers and their Executive colleagues were delighted to host Madame Liu and to launch the Confucius Institute at the University of Ulster and sign partnership agreements with Queens University Belfast," said Losty.

He expressed the hope of arranging more visits to Belfast by Chinese delegations in the future.

Losty said that North Ireland wants to do many things in collaboration with China, including increasing trade and students exchanges between Northern Ireland and China, strengthening bilateral science and technology collaboration, enhancing cooperation in culture, sports and tourism as well as environmental protection, and rasing understanding of Chinese culture and language.

During the visit to Beijing, they may discuss possibilities of founding North Ireland-China strategic advisory group, and identifying regions in China to establish partnerships.

During his November trip to Shanghai and Hong Kong, the first minister listed several sectors for overseas market, such as engineering, food, IT, life sciences, construction, transport, aerospace and renewable energy, saying that Northern Ireland has a lot to offer the Chinese market.

Losty said the economic mission to Shanghai and Hong Kong last November was very successful and "we hope to follow this up with another mission in June this year."

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