Visiting Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi on Tuesday called for a strategic and forward-looking perspective in handling China-Canada relations and expressed optimism about a better future of this relationship.
Yang made the comment during an address at a luncheon hosted by the Canada-China Business Council (CCBC) in Ottawa.
The China-Canada relationship has been generally improving and growing over the past years, said Yang, though still with disagreements sometimes.
Since Chinese President Hu Jintao and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper reached an agreement on bilateral ties at the G8 Outreach Session in Japan last July, the exchanges and cooperation between the two countries in all areas have been greatly boosted, he said.
To enhance bilateral relations, it is important to respect the world diversity, people's right to choose development paths of their own countries, and not to interfere in other countries' internal affairs, Yang said.
He called on Canada and China to view the relations from a strategic, forward-looking perspective. Although the two countries differ in national conditions and do not always see eye to eye on everything, these differences shouldn't stand in the way of the relations, he said.
He suggested the two nations maintain exchanges at all levels and increase political trust, to further promote economic cooperation, to respect and accommodate each other's concerns and properly handle sensitive issues, and to invigorate people-to-people, cultural exchanges between the two countries.
At a time when the global financial crisis continues to spread and deepen, Yang said, there is more reason for China and Canada to closely cooperate and help the world economy to recover at an early date.
Next year is the 40th anniversary of China and Canada establishing diplomatic relations, which offers the two countries a new start to push for more cooperation and bigger development, said Yang.
The Chinese foreign minister arrived in Ottawa on Sunday for a two-day official visit. He left for New York on Tuesday afternoon to attend the UN Conference on the World Financial and Economic Crisis and its Impact on Development slated on June 24-26.