Chinese President Hu Jintao
arrived in Perth on Monday for a
state visit to Australia, where he will also attend the APEC
Economic Leaders' Meeting in Sydney on September 8-9.
During his visit, Hu plans to discuss with Australian leaders ways
of furthering the development of bilateral relations, as well as
major world and regional issues of common concern.
This year marks the 35th anniversary of the establishment of
diplomatic ties between China and Australia. In 2006, the two
countries agreed to cooperatively develop comprehensive ties for
mutual benefit in the 21st century.
"China and Australia are important countries in the Asia-Pacific
region. Over the past 35 years since the establishment of
diplomatic ties, the two countries have treated each other as
equals with mutual respect and actively promoted friendly exchanges
and win-win cooperation, and their relationship has maintained a
strong momentum of growth," Hu said in a written statement issued
In recent years, cooperation between the two countries has
expanded steadily in such fields as economy, trade, energy,
environmental protection, culture, science and technology,
education, and tourism.
China is the second largest trading partner for Australia while
Australia is China's ninth. In 2006, bilateral trade amounted to
US$32.9 billion, up 20 percent from the previous year.
In the first six months of 2007, bilateral trade reached US$19.5
billion, a 35 percent increase over the corresponding period of
"I am visiting Australia to increase mutual trust, expand common
ground, deepen cooperation, and boost the growth of China-Australia
ties," Hu said in the statement.
Soon after his arrival, Hu met with West Australia Premier Alan
China has become West Australia's largest export market and its
second largest trading partner. In recent years, China and
Australia's resource-rich state have carried out a series of large
cooperation projects in the fields of energy and natural resources.
These projects "have provided resources necessary for China's
economic construction while vigorously driving the economic growth
in West Australia," Hu said.
"Meanwhile, the two sides have also expanded cooperation in
education and scientific research," he added.
China stands ready to work with West Australia to bring the
level of dual-track cooperation to a new height, he said.
Carpenter said he was delighted to see the sound and mutually
beneficial cooperation between West Australia and China and hoped
the cooperation would deepen in trade, infrastructure, science and
technology, and personnel exchanges.
Perth, capital of West Australia, is the first leg of Hu's
weeklong trip, which will also take him to Canberra and Sydney.
"President Hu's visit to Australia will help boost friendly
relations, intensify high-level exchanges, and consolidate
pragmatic cooperation between China and Australia, " Chinese
Assistant Foreign Minister He Yafei told a press conference in
Beijing last Tuesday.
In Sydney, President Hu will attend the 15th Economic Leaders
Meeting of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum, and
meet with leaders of other APEC members on the sidelines of the
APEC is the premier forum for facilitating economic growth,
cooperation, trade and investment in the Asia-Pacific region. Since
its birth in 1989, APEC has grown to encompass 21 members spanning
four continents, representing the most economically dynamic region
in the world.
The 21 APEC member economies are Australia, Brunei, Canada,
Chile, China, China's Hong Kong, Chinese Taipei, Indonesia, Japan,
Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Peru, the
Philippines, Russia, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand, the United
States, and Vietnam.
(Xinhua News Agency September 4, 2007)