November 22, 2002

Chinese, British FMs Hold Talks

China attaches great importance to Sino-British relations and is willing to work with Britain to further boost the development of bilateral ties, Chinese Foreign Minister Tang Jiaxuan said in Beijing Monday.

Tang made the statement during talks with visiting British Secretary of Foreign Affairs Jack Straw.

He noted that during the 30 years since China and Britain established full diplomatic ties, bilateral relations have developed steadily.

The frequent visits between the leaders of the two sides have effectively boosted mutual understanding, trust and cooperation, he said.

Tang said trade between China and Britain exceeded US$10 billion last year. This makes Britain China's largest trading partner in the European Union and China would welcome Britain's taking part in its economic construction.

China and Britain have also cooperated well in cultural exchanges, said Tang. The agreement between the two sides to establish cultural centers in both countries will help increase mutual understanding, and benefit bilateral relations, he added.

Straw agreed Sino-British relations have developed in a healthy way in recent years. He said as permanent members of the United Nations Security Council, Britain and China have had satisfactory dialogue and cooperation on anti-terrorism and other issues.

Britain also attaches great importance to British-Chinese relations, said Straw. The British government hopes to improve its friendly cooperation with China in the political, economic, cultural and educational fields.

Straw said the British government has been consistent on the Taiwan issue. He said, Britain does not recognize Taiwan as "an independent country," and Britain considers Taiwan a province of China and the People's Republic of China as the legitimate government of the whole of China.

Straw said Britain will not establish official ties with Taiwan, and not have any official exchanges with it.

(Xinhua News Agency July 16, 2002)

In This Series
Blair: China-UK Ties on Good Momentum

Chinese Vice President on Sino-UK Ties



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