State Councilor Liu Yandong and British Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt met at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London on Monday to launch a new cultural dialogue mechanism between the two countries.
The two officials signed at the end of their meeting an MOU on building the mechanism of high-level cultural exchanges between the two governments.
Liu said the China-Britain relations, among the most important bilateral relations, have been deepened and broadened in the past four decades and the comprehensive strategic partnership between the two countries has also evolved and become more mature.
Noting that the China-Britain relations now stand at a new starting point, Liu said the two countries should take this opportunity to promote two-way trade and investment cooperation, strengthen communication on governance practices, boost economic and social development, and work together for world peace and prosperity.
To push forward the long-term friendship between China and Britain, the two sides have to deepen mutual understanding between both the governments and the two peoples, Liu said.
China and Britain should look beyond differences in social mechanism, historical and cultural traditions, and developing stages, and make the foundation of China-Britain friendship more solid by enhancing cultural exchanges, she said.
The state councilor put forward a four-point proposal for the dialogue mechanism, under which both sides should optimize top management, respect and learn from each other, diversify communication participants, and work step by step with priorities.
Liu also provided some suggestions for developing cultural exchanges, covering areas such as education, science and technology, arts and media cooperation.
For his part, Hunt said the mechanism launched Monday is destined to help expand the solid cultural ties between the two countries and strengthen direct communication between the two peoples and bring more trade opportunities as well.
"I hope that through this, the first of our cultural dialogues with China, we will develop deeper ties across all the areas that interest us. China is a country with a vibrant cultural past and a growing economic future. There is much that we can learn from one another," he said.