BERLIN, March 29 -- Chinese President Xi Jinping's visit to Germany will contribute to mutual understanding and trust between the two countries, German Vice Chancellor and Economy Minister Sigmar Gabriel said Friday in an exclusive interview with Xinhua.
Xi arrived in Berlin on Friday for a state visit to Germany.
"We are delighted and feel honored that Chinese President Xi Jinping pays a visit to Germany," Gabriel said in a written interview.
As Germany and China have kept friendly and close bilateral relations, the two countries hope to have closer cooperation during Xi's visit, Gabriel said.
"Germany and China have a lot in common. We are both big exporting nations and engines of economic development in our respective regions. We are facing similar challenges such as demographic change as well as environmental and climate protection. It is absolutely consequent that the two countries are looking for closer cooperation," the minister told Xinhua.
Asked about China's new development strategy, which stresses quality rather than quantity and prioritizes sustainability and innovation, Gabriel said Germany is following China's development strategy with great interest.
"It is in all our interests that China achieves success with its development strategy because China's economic development is important for the world economy," he added.
Gabriel also praised the role of Chinese investors in creating jobs and boosting economic growth in Germany. He welcomed more Chinese investors to his country.
"At the beginning, not all the Chinese investment activities concluded with success and it often led to critical comments in the press regarding Chinese investment in Germany. But Chinese enterprises have learned from the initial difficulties and become much better adapted to the conditions in Germany," he said.
The minister noted that the most successful Chinese investors are those who are showing great transparency and also willing to have open conversation with the German staff.
The decision to make the city of Frankfurt an offshore trading place for the Chinese currency RMB provides fresh impetus for trade between Germany and China, and will benefit both German and Chinese enterprises, Gabriel said.
"For large enterprises of both sides, especially for our internationally-oriented small and medium enterprises, an easier access to the Chinese currency means a significant improvement of conditions for their business with China," he said.
President Xi's visit witnessed several agreements signed between the two sides, which will bring about concrete results for Germany, Gabriel said.