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CELAC-EU summit bolsters bi-regional ties: European Council chief


15:25, January 28, 2013

SANTIAGO, Jan. 27 (Xinhua) -- European Council President Herman Van Rompuy said here on Sunday that a two-day bi-regional summit served to bolster Europe's ties with Latin American countries.

Van Rompuy made his remarks after the closing ceremony of the first summit between the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) and the European Union (EU).

"This summit has been a new opportunity for the EU and the CELAC to get closer, as well as to make progress on our shared agenda," he said.

"Latin America is a key trade partner for the EU and vice versa and the same is true for foreign direct investment," Van Rompuy said. "During the summit we have jointly worked on the concept of 'investment with quality' and its contribution to sustained economic growth and to society as a whole."

"We have studied the way to achieve inclusive and diversified economic growth that contributes to the fight against poverty and promotes social cohesion. In this context, we have acknowledged Latin America and the Caribbean's advances so that tens of millions of people emerge from poverty," he added.

When asked about the European debt crisis, Van Rompuy said, "it will still take some time before we can resume growth and return to stability."

"The priority for European countries is to reduce the time lapses, speed up recovery and job creation," he said.

Van Rompuy summed up that the main results of the summit were the Santiago Declaration, a document reaffirming bi-regional commitments, and additions to the EU-CELAC Plan of Action in the areas of gender rights and investments.

The CELAC-EU summit held in Santiago on Jan. 26 and 27, brought together delegations from 60 EU and Latin American states, including 40 heads of state and government.

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