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Seychellois President: Hu's Visit Is Historic Event
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The just-concluded visit by Chinese President Hu Jintao was a historic event in the development of Sino-Seychellois relations and marked a new era in cooperation between the two countries, Seychellois President James Michel told the media in Victoria on Saturday.

The differences between China and Seychelles were great but the similarities were even greater, Michel said in a statement at the airport just before the departure of President Hu Jintao, who arrived here on Friday from Mozambique.

Seychelles and China had so much in common in terms of their vision of the future, development and friendship, he added. Seychelles had benefited a lot from China in its socioeconomic development in the past 30 years, the president said.

Hu is the first Chinese head of state to visit the Indian Ocean island country since the establishment of bilateral diplomatic relations in 1976.

Seychelles is also the last leg of Hu's eight-African-country tour which included Cameroon, Liberia, Sudan, Zambia, Namibia, South Africa and Mozambique.

China and Seychelles signed five agreements on bilateral cooperation Saturday morning following talks between the two presidents.

China agreed to build a new National Assemble house and a school for Seychelles as well as to provide US$ million in budget support and another 50 million yuan, or US$6.4million for mutually-agreed future projects.

Two-way trade between the two countries was officially put at US$5.9 million in 2006.

(Xinhua News Agency February 11, 2007)

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