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China, Argentina seek closer cooperation

Chinese President Xi Jinping and his Argentine counterpart, Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, agreed here Friday to upgrade bilateral ties to a comprehensive strategic partnership.

Bilateral cooperation has made tremendous progress since the two countries established a strategic partnership 10 years ago, Xi said in his talks with the Argentine president.

In order to promote the future development of bilateral ties, the two sides have decided to lift their relationship from a strategic partnership to a comprehensive strategic partnership, added Xi, who is here for a state visit to the South American country.

Noting that China and Argentina are both emerging-market economies at an important phase of development, Xi said they should stick to the in-the-same-boat spirit and deepen cooperation so as to tackle challenges and achieve common development.

He also urged the two countries to learn from each other's governance experiences, facilitate personnel exchanges and carry out more cultural exchanges.

The two sides, he said, should promote stable and balanced growth of bilateral trade, actively boost cooperation in such fields as gas, mining industry, agriculture and nuclear power, and deepen strategic cooperation in infrastructure construction and finance.

In addition, he suggested that the two sides strengthen communication and coordination on such major issues as global governance and the reform of international economic and financial systems, defend the rights of developing countries, and push for a more equitable and reasonable world order.

For her part, Cristina said the two countries share similar stands on a number of major issues and bilateral ties have strategic and global significance.

The establishment of the comprehensive strategic partnership serves the fundamental interests of both countries and peoples, and is conducive to the democratization of international relations, she added.

Argentina admires China's development, and is willing to learn from its successful experiences, she said, adding that her country also stands ready to boost cooperation with China under multilateral frameworks like the United Nations and the Group of 20.

The Argentine president also expressed her country's concern on its debt disputes with so-called "vulture" funds in the United States.

In response, Xi said the Chinese side understands Argentina's concern on debt restructuring and hopes that the issue will be settled properly.

Following their talks, the two leaders witnessed the signing of a joint statement and a series of bilateral cooperation deals.

According to the statement, the two leaders agreed to keep frequent communication on bilateral relations and issues of common concern, and pledged to deepen political mutual trust and support the development paths and core interests of each other's countries.

The Argentine side reiterated that it firmly sticks to the one-China policy and supports China's efforts to achieve peaceful reunification.

In response, Xi said China firmly supports Argentina's claim of the sovereignty over the Malvinas Islands and the restart of negotiations based on relevant UN resolutions to solve the issue in a peaceful way.

The two presidents spoke highly of the founding of the China-Argentina inter-governmental standing committee, calling on relevant departments of the two sides to give full play to this mechanism, so as to secure sustained and comprehensive development of bilateral relations.

The two leaders also expressed satisfaction over the convening of the first China-Argentina Strategic Dialogue on Economic Cooperation and Coordination during Xi's visit.

The two countries, as representatives of the emerging-market economies, play important roles in the international arena and share extensive common interests and similar stances on many international and regional issues, the statement said.

The two sides agreed that the international community should take joint action to prevent speculative capital from hindering the restructuring of sovereign debt.

The two countries, according to the statement, also agreed to join hands in the construction of a heavy water reactor power plant in Argentina.

Argentina is the second leg of Xi's four-nation Latin America tour, which will also take him to Venezuela and Cuba. He visited Brazil earlier in the trip, his second to the region since he took over the presidency in March 2013.

[Source: Xinhua, Bs As, 18Jul14]

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