The Chinese government holds a positive attitude towards the mutually beneficial Sino-Lebanese cooperation in such fields as economy, trade and investment, said Chinese Premier Zhu Rongji Sunday afternoon in Beijing during his talks with Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri who is on a three-day official visit to China.
The Chinese government holds a positive attitude towards mutually beneficial Sino-Lebanese cooperation in such fields as economy, trade and investment.
Chinese Premier Zhu Rongji made the remarks Sunday afternoon during his talks with Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri who arrived in Beijing Saturday as Zhu's guest on a three-day official visit to China.
Economic, trade ties highlighted
Zhu noted that economic and trade cooperation is an important component in Sino-Lebanese friendship and cooperation.
He mentioned Chinese State Councilor Wu Yi's visit to Lebanon in March this year, saying during Wu's visit the two sides discussed in detail issues concerning bilateral economic and trade cooperation.
The Chinese side is speeding up its coordination with Lebanon to implement cooperative projects, said Zhu, adding that Hariri's current visit coincides with the first meeting of the economic, technological and trade committee composed of members from both countries.
He said he is convinced that with joint efforts from both sides, it will be possible to further explore the potential for bilateral economic and trade cooperation.
Zhu referred to China's economic progress, its entry into the World Trade Organization, Lebanon's preparations for re-building its infrastructure and China's technological advances in many fields.
Both governments encourage business cooperation
He said the Chinese government encourages its domestic businesses to invest in Lebanon, and the two governments should encourage their business people to conduct cooperation to their own advantage.
Hariri said Lebanon is a small country with great market potential and there are broad prospects for bilateral economic and trade cooperation.
He said he believes that bilateral economic and trade exchanges and cooperation will play an important role in pushing forward bilateral ties.
The Lebanese government supports exchanges and cooperation in various forms between its businesses and their Chinese counterparts.
On Nov. 9,1971,China and Lebanon established diplomatic relation. After that, some senior Lebanese officials have visited China, among whom were Foreign Minister KHALIL ABU HAMAD, Secretary General of Foreign Ministry TULK, Chairman of the Progressive Socialist Party WALID JOUMBLATT, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Immigration Affairs FARES BOUEIZ, Prime Minister RAFIC HARIRI, Secretary General of Foreign Ministry ZAFER AL-HASSAN, etc.
And visitors from the Chinese side were Vice Foreign Ministers HeYing, Qi Huaiyuan, Yang Fuchang and Tian Zengpei, President of the Textile Industry Federation Wu Wenying, Vice Minister of Transportation Liu Songjin, Vice Chairwoman of All-China Women's Federation Huang Qizao, Vice Minister of Foreign Trade and Economic Cooperation Liu Shanzai, Assistant Foreign Minister Ji Peiding, Vice Premier and Foreign Minister Qian Qichen and Vice Chairman of NPC Standing Committee Tomur Dawamat.
Agreements that have been signed between China and Lebanon include: Trade Agreement, Agreement On Investment Protection, Agreement On Economic, Trade and Technological Cooperation, etc. In 2000, the Chinese Government provided gratuitous aids of 5 million RBM to Lebanon.
In 1999, the total volume of imports and exports between the two countries was $169 million, China exported $168 million and imported $414,000.