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Chinese premier meets Finnish president


09:16, April 10, 2013

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang (R) shakes hands with Finnish President Sauli Niinisto in Beijing, capital of China, April 9, 2013. (Xinhua/Ding Lin)

BEIJING, April 9 (Xinhua) -- Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and Finnish President Sauli Niinisto met in Beijing on Tuesday to discuss boosting bilateral relations.

President Niinisto is the first European head of state to visit China since the inception of the new Chinese cabinet in March, Li said.

Chinese President Xi Jinping also held talks with Niinisto on the sidelines of the Boao Forum for Asia (BFA) Annual Conference 2013, which took place from Saturday to Monday in south China's island province of Hainan.

Li reviewed the healthy and steady growth of China-Finland relations, which are based on mutual trust, equality and common prosperity.

The premier said it is the consensus of the two countries to promote innovation and seek development.

They should cooperate more in science and technology, fields which have a broad future, according to Li.

He urged the two countries to stick to the principle of opening up, protect intellectual property rights, expand trade and investment and promote cooperation between businesses in a bid to make the China-Finland partnership a paradigm of China-Europe mutually beneficial cooperation.

On China-Europe relations, Li underscored China's commitment to developing stronger relations with Europe.

"China will continue to support European efforts to address debt issues and promote growth," he said.

Niinisto said the BFA conference was a great success and that China's development will benefit the world.

The Finnish president added that Finland-China cooperation has benefited the two nations, pledging efforts to deepen pragmatic cooperation to boost the bilateral partnership and European relations with China.

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