|Wu Bangguo (R), chairman of the Standing Committee of the Chinese National People's Congress, meets with Mulatu Teshome (L), speaker of the Ethiopian House of the Federation, during their meeting at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, Dec. 21, 2004.|
The heads of Chinese and Ethiopian legislative bodies said in Beijing
Tuesday that the two countries have strong political will to further expand their partnership of all-round cooperation.
Wu Bangguo, chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPC) of China, and Mulatu Teshome, speaker of the Ethiopian House of the Federation, made the comment during their meeting in the Great Hall of the People in Beijing Tuesday afternoon.
Wu said both the NPC and the parliament of Ethiopia play an important role in the political life of their own country. Wu said the NPC is ready to join efforts with its Ethiopian counterpart to make positive contributions to the all-round development of bilateral relations and that the two sides have maintained sound exchanges and cooperation in recent years.
Mulatu said the two countries share broad common interests and that bilateral relations have been growing closer in recent years. He said the enhanced politically mutual trust will serve as a basis for expansion of trade and investment between the two countries. He said the exchanges and cooperation between the parliaments of the two countries will play a pivotal role in the development of bilateral relations.
Exchange of visits between senior leaders of the two countries has been frequent in the past two years. This is the second time that Mulatu visited China over the past few years. His current visit follows Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi's visit to China in November. Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao visited Ethiopia last December to attend the opening ceremony of the Second Ministerial Conference of the China-Africa Cooperation Forum.
Mulatu said the China-Africa Cooperation Forum serves as a bridge of exchanges and cooperation between Africa and China, which helps both sides overcome their distance and become even closer to each other.
Wu said China highly values its relationship with Africa. He said China is ready to strengthen coordination and cooperation with all African countries within the framework of the China-Africa Cooperation Forum, so as to further deepen the long-term, stable, equal and mutually beneficial partnership between China and Africa.
China and Ethiopia established diplomatic relations more than 30 years ago.
Over the years, the two countries have conducted fruitful cooperation in such fields as politics, trade, economy, culture, education, health and international affairs. Wu said China is ready to join efforts with Ethiopia to push forward the all-round cooperative partnership.