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People's Daily Online>>Foreign Affairs

Chinese state councilor calls for closer ties with Belgium

(Xinhua)

11:32, April 18, 2012

BRUSSELS, April 18 (Xinhua) -- Visiting Chinese State Councilor Liu Yandong said here Tuesday she hopes Belgium could serve not only as a gateway for Chinese investment into Europe but also as a "bridgehead" for cultural exchanges between China and the European Union (EU).

At a meeting with Belgian Prime Minister Elio Di Rupo, Liu said China-Belgium ties have undergone smooth development in recent years and contacts between the two sides at various levels have been frequent.

Trade ties between China and Belgium have also witnessed robust growth and bilateral cooperation in various fields have been fruitful, added Liu, who is also a member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee.

China is willing to work jointly with Belgium to consolidate mutual political trust between the two sides, respect and accommodate each other's core interests and major concerns, and explore new ways of cooperation to achieve win-win results, Liu said.

For his part, Di Rupo expressed admiration for the great achievements by China in its social and economic development, noting that China is now among the most significant global players.

Belgium is willing to push forward all-round cooperation with China, especially in the areas of economy and culture, and actively contribute to the improvement of ties between China and the EU as a whole.

Liu also met on Tuesday Belgian Crown Prince Philippe and attended a welcome banquet hosted by Andre Flahaut, president of the Chamber of the Belgian Federal Parliament.

Liu is expected to kick off the first-ever China-EU high-level people-to-people dialogue in Brussels on Wednesday, together with Androulla Vassiliou, EU commissioner for education, culture, multilingualism and youth.

The high-level people-to-people dialogue is designed to provide a lively platform for the exchange of ideas between China and Europe, following the established high-level economic and trade dialogue and the high-level strategic dialogue.

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