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Hu Meets with EU Leaders

President Hu Jintao met in Beijing Monday with British Prime Minister Tony Blair, President of the European Commission Manuel Barroso, and EU Council Secretary-General Javier Solana, who are here to attend the eighth China-EU summit.

Hu said he had "very good talks" with Blair and Barroso not long ago in Gleneagles, Scotland, and Beijing, respectively. He is very glad to have met them again in Beijing.

Keeping frequent exchanges between China-EU leaders is conducive to enhancing mutual understanding, expanding mutually beneficial cooperation and boosting the development of the China-EU comprehensive strategic partnership, Hu said.

Blair, whose country now holds the EU rotating presidency, said the EU-China comprehensive strategic partnership is "very important," not only for bilateral trade and economic cooperation, but also for their cooperation in important political issues of the world.

Hu said China-EU ties are more mature after 30 years of development. The two sides have maintained frequent high-level dialogues and consultation, and bilateral trade volume has seen continuous substantive increases.

Meanwhile, China and the EU have made new progress in their cooperation on some important projects, and have kept close contacts and coordination on major international and regional issues, he added.

"We appreciate the EU's adherence to the one-China policy and its efforts in facilitating bilateral mutually beneficial cooperation," Hu said.

He said China and the EU are "two important forces" on the present international stage.

In this era of global multilateralism and economic globalization, the deepening of a China-EU comprehensive strategic partnership is of profound importance to maintaining world peace, promoting common development and realizing mutual benefits, he said.

China attaches great importance to its relations with the EU, Hu said, expressing his hope that the two sides will enhance mutual trust, expand consensus and promote their strategic partnership.

Hu noted that China also highly values Sino-British ties, and is ready to join hands with Britain to further deepen the Sino-British comprehensive strategic partnership. He hopes Britain will play a "positive role" in advancing bilateral ties during its holding of EU rotating presidency.

Blair said he agrees with Hu, noting he hopes the two sides will make joint efforts to beef up bilateral ties.

The EU pursues the one-China policy and the two sides have conducted fruitful cooperation in trade, education and environmental protection, and still enjoy broad prospects, Blair said.

From the EU standpoint, Barroso said the EU looks upon China's development from a global point of view. China's development brings opportunity to the EU.

He hopes the two sides will promote the smooth development of economic and trade cooperation in a "friendly, flexible and mutual understanding" attitude.

Solana said the EU and China have made "fruitful cooperation" in international affairs. The EU hopes to maintain close contacts with China and enhance bilateral cooperation on important international and regional issues such as anti-terrorism and the non-proliferation of arms.

During the China-EU summit scheduled for Monday afternoon, Premier Wen Jiabao and EU leaders will exchange views on the further development of the China-EU all-round strategic partnership as well as international and regional issues of common concern.

(Xinhua News Agency September 5, 2005)

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