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Chinese vice premier eyes broader cooperation with South Asian countries


08:39, June 06, 2013

KUNMING, June 5 (Xinhua) -- Vice Premier Ma Kai said Wednesday that China attaches importance on expanding cooperation with South Asian countries.

Ma made the remarks while meeting with attendees of the first China-South Asia Expo, which will run in Kunming, capital of southwest China's Yunnan Province, from June 6 to 10.

While meeting with Malawi President Joyce Banda, Ma said both countries have consolidated mutual trust, carried out fruitful cooperation and increased people-to-people contact, adding that China is ready to work with Malawi to boost bilateral relations.

Banda said Malawi welcomes more Chinese companies to invest in the country and participate in its economic recovery.

While meeting with Nepalese Vice President Paramananda Jha, Ma said China is ready to strengthen cooperation with Nepal by promoting common development.

Jha said Nepal has always placed importance on its relations with China and firmly adhered to the one-China policy. He expressed willingness to strengthen bilateral cooperation in the areas of trade, agriculture and tourism.

While meeting with South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) Secretary-General Ahmed Saleem, Ma said China is ready to carry out dialogue and cooperation with SAARC in the spirit of "sharing peace, promoting development and seeking cooperation."

He said China is ready to play a constructive role in pushing forward the integration of SAARC and advancing peace and development in South Asia.

Saleem expressed readiness to push for new progress in SAARC-China cooperation.

While meeting with former Malaysian Prime Minister Datuk Seri Mahathir Bin Mohamad, Ma said he appreciates Mahathir's efforts to advance China-Malaysia cooperation, adding that he believes bilateral relations will reach a new stage through joint efforts from both sides.

Mahathir said Malaysia has been glad to see the rise of China and its contributions in promoting regional peace, stability and growth. He expressed hope that Chinese and Malaysian companies will strengthen cooperation and realize sustainable growth together.

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