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Strategic energy partnership in the pipeline for China, Turkmenistan

(Xinhua)

18:47, November 23, 2011

BEIJING, Nov. 23 (Xinhua) -- Chinese President Hu Jintao pledged on Wednesday to deepen energy cooperation with Turkmenistan and establish a strategic energy partnership following the success of the natural gas pipeline between the two countries opened in 2009.

Hu made the remarks in wide-ranging talks with Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov, who is on a four-day state visit to China.

After their one-and-a-half-hour meeting, the two presidents signed a joint declaration on deepening bilateral friendly cooperation and an agreement on increasing Turkmenistan's natural gas supply to China, already the largest importer of the product.

Calling the two countries good friends and partners, Hu praised the momentum of bilateral relations since the forging of their diplomatic ties 20 years ago, citing remarkable energy cooperation, frequent high-level visits, expanded trade cooperation and vigorous cultural exchanges.

"China highly values its relations with Turkmenistan," said Hu, adding it is a policy of the Chinese government to develop friendly and cooperative relations with Turkmenistan on the basis of mutual respect, equality and mutual benefits.

Considering China as a top-priority strategic partner of Turkmenistan, Berdymukhamedov told Hu his country appreciates China's respect for Turkmenistan's neutral country status.

Berdymukhamedov vowed to firmly stick to the one-China policy, support China's peaceful reunification and territorial integrity, and oppose so-called "Taiwan Independence" in any form.

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