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Premier Wen encourages GMS youth
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Visiting Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao on Sunday called on the youth in the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) countries to "learn from each other" and "make bigger contribution " to the common development and prosperity in the region.

Wen made the remarks here in a dialogue between leaders and youth representatives from the six GMS countries, namely China, Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand and Myanmar. He highlighted that the young people are not only the hope for their respective countries and nations, but also "represent the prospect for the future economic cooperation" in the region.

Wen said that China is committed to continuing to boost the exchange and communication between the young people in the GMS region and will join in hands with the other five countries to create better conditions for them to exchange ideas and learn from each other.

"The issues you mentioned during the dialogue, such as strengthening exchange and communication, environmental protection, prevention of contagious disease and employment, are also the ones often in our minds", Wen told the young people, adding that their views and suggestions are very valuable for the statesmen to consider and make decisions.

Wen also announced that China would offer extra governmental scholarship for the 200 GMS students to further their study in universities in China's Southwest provinces of Yunnan and Guizhou and Guangxi Autonomous Region.

Invited as the guest of Lao Prime Minister Bouasone Bouphavanh, Wen arrived here on Saturday evening for a working visit to Laos and participating in the Third GMS Summit.

The GMS, established in 1992, promotes economic and social development, irrigation and cooperation within the six Mekong countries. The first GMS Summit was held in Cambodia's Phnom Penh in 2002, and the second in southwest China's Kunming province in 2005.

(Xinhua News Agency March 30, 2008)

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