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Chinese, French leaders reach sweeping consensus
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Chinese and French leaders have reached sweeping consensus on major issues which promote mutual trust and strategic partnership, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Jianchao said Monday.

Liu said during Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao's meeting with visiting French President Nicolas Sarkozy, Wen outlined China's position on the Renminbi exchange rate issue.

Wen said that the establishment of the mechanism for setting the Renminbi exchange rate, which depends on the supply and demand of the market, is China's established policy and China will gradually expand the RMB's convertability in accordance with the principles of initiative, controllability and progressiveness, according to Liu.

He said Sarkozy expressed appreciation for China's open attitude toward this issue and both sides agreed to maintain discussions on this issue.

Both sides also touched upon the issue of the trade imbalance between China and Europe, Liu said.

China hopes to see a trade balance and is willing to strengthen consultation with major trading partners including France on this issue, Liu said, adding China is making efforts to reduce the current trade surplus.

Sarkozy, in his meetings with Chinese leaders, said it is unreasonable for the European Union to maintain the ban on weapon sales to China and he called for the lifting of the ban, Liu said.

China appreciates Sarkozy's positive position on this issue, the spokesman said.

Sarkozy also expected China to make more contributions and playa bigger role in international affairs, Liu said.

Both sides also exchanged views on the Iran nuclear issue, Myanmar issue and human rights issue, he added.

Sarkozy arrived in Beijing on Sunday for his first state visit to China since taking office in May.

(Xinhua News Agency November 27, 2007)

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