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Time for closer relations with Vietnam, Hu says

By Wu Jiao (China Daily)

08:16, November 14, 2011

HONOLULU - China and Vietnam should consolidate their friendship, despite potential problems in bilateral ties, President Hu Jintao said on Saturday.

Hu made the remarks when meeting with Vietnam's President Truong Tan Sang at the sidelines of the 19th leaders meeting of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation group in Hawaii.

It's the first time the two have met since Sang was elected president this year.

Hu said that the two countries have maintained a dialogue and fruitful economic and trade cooperation during the past two decades.

China has been Vietnam's largest trade partner for the past seven years.

Bilateral trade totaled $30 billion in 2010. Trade reached about $25 billion in the first eight months of this year, up 40 percent year-on-year.

"The experience of the past 20 years conveys to us a most important inspiration: that is, China and Vietnam should both follow the path of friendly cooperation," Hu told Sang.

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