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ASEM summit: chance to reveal China's openness, progress
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This month's summit of the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) offers an historic chance for China to show its openness, progress and cooperation, said Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi in Beijing on Thursday.

In a written response to Xinhua questions, he said the Beijing summit was an important diplomatic event for China after the Beijing Olympics and Paralympics, and also the first gathering since the ASEM's enlargement to 45 members in 2006.

Yang considered the summit a very important opportunity to cement China's exchanges and cooperation with Asian and European countries in politics, economy and culture.

The Chinese government attached great importance to the summit, Yang said. The Foreign Ministry had cooperated closely with the Beijing municipal government to prepare for the summit.

He said China had worked closely with ASEM members in the preparations.

The 45-member ASEM, established in 1996, is a high-level forum between governments of Asia and Europe. It aims at creating better conditions for cooperation between the two continents through strengthening dialogue and mutual understanding.

Chinese premiers have attended all ASEM summits since 1996 and proposed to build up a new-type of Asia-Europe partnership.

(Xinhua News Agency October 16, 2008)

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