Premier Wen delivers strong message for East Asian cooperation

08:12, October 27, 2009      

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With a delighted and relieved smile, Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao waved to the crowd on Sunday at the airport in Thai resort Hua Hin before he left for home.

The premier has successfully finished his visit to Thailand after attending a series of summit meetings related to the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) during the past three days.

China's Premier Wen Jiabao (L Front) arrives in Hua Hin, Thailand, Oct. 23, 2009 for a series of meetings related to the Association of Southeast Asian Nations. (Xinhua/Pang Xinglei)

This is Wen's second visit to this country in 2009. Half a year ago, despite extreme political turbulence in Thailand, Wen decided to attend the ASEAN summits in Pattaya in a bid to show China's sincerity to the world.

During the 22 hours in Pattaya, Wen used all possible chances to hold talks with the leaders at the summits and meet journalists, transmitting China's determination and confidence in overcoming the global financial crisis and pushing forward East Asia cooperation.

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao (C) meets the press in Hua Hin, Thailand, Oct. 23, 2009. (Xinhua/Pang Xinglei)

Wen had been deeply convinced that enhancing cooperation and working together to overcome the difficulties of the time were in accord with the fundamental interests of East Asian peoples.

Once we had sincerity, determination and confidence, the hope would not be dashed, the premier said.

During the following six months, the Chinese government decided to set up a 10-billion-U.S. dollar China-ASEAN investment cooperation fund, establish the China-ASEAN Free Trade Area, and provide financial support to ASEAN countries. Trade between China and ASEAN has entered into the period of recovery since September.

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao has a working lunch with leaders attending the fourth East Asia Summit in the southern Thai resort town of Hua Hin, Oct. 25, 2009. (Xinhua/Pang Xinglei)

At the Oct. 23-25 Hua Hin summits, Wen brought not only good news of China's economic rebound, but also a six-point proposal for strengthening cooperation between China and ASEAN, which included building an economic cooperation zone and boosting cooperation in such sectors as investment, agriculture, intellectual property rights, infrastructure construction and culture.

Wen emphasized that challenge could turn into opportunity, cooperation could bring strength, while innovation could contribute to success.

The blueprint of East Asia cooperation would be better, he said, adding that the hope is just like "an imperishable lighthouse," which leads the East Asian people amid ups and downs.

Mutual respect and trust constitute the foundation for cooperation. Wen held a series of meetings with leaders of other countries during the ASEAN summits, with his meetings with Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd having been widely followed.

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao (R) meets with Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in Hua Hin, Thailand, on Oct. 24, 2009. Wen arrived here on Friday evening to attend the summit meetings of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) with its partners. (Xinhua/Pang Xinglei)

Wen and Singh have confirmed their strong willingness for common and harmonious development between the two sides during their talks.

Maintaining good-neighborly and friendly relations as well as mutual beneficial cooperation between the two big developing countries would not only benefit both peoples, but also bring hope for Asia and the world, the two leaders said.

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao (R) meets with Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd in Hua Hin, Thailand, October 24, 2009. Wen Jiabao and Kevin Rudd are here to attend a series of leaders' meeting related to the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).(Xinhua/Liu Weibing)

Although China and Australia have different political systems, levels of economic development, historical and cultural background, common interests had led to an increasingly close relationship between the two Asia-Pacific powers.

The talks between Wen and Rudd had shown that there would be no unconquerable difficulties as long as the two sides treated each other with mutual respect and pursued win-win cooperation.

Establishing an East Asian Community is the common desire of the people in the region, though the path toward realizing the goal will be long and bumpy.

China will sincerely, firmly, actively and effectively engage in pushing forward the integration of East Asia.

Half a century ago, together with India and Myanmar, China proposed the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence, advocating for mutual respect, equal treatment and friendly cooperation among all nations. In the early 1990s, China initiated the cooperation between ASEAN and itself. In the aftermath of the Asian financial crisis, the regional cooperation in East Asia began to pick up in pace.

Wen firmly expressed at the Hua Hin summits that China would work with East Asian nations toward realizing the long-term goal of establishing the East Asian Community.

The clouds of the international financial crisis remain overhead. However, consensus and hopes are in the making among the members of East Asia, shining as an ever-bright lighthouse and leading the way to a more promising future.

Source: Xinhua
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