BEIJING: Chinese President Xi Jinping and his French counterpart Francois Hollande pledged Monday to work together to deepen bilateral relations.
The two leaders exchanged congratulatory messages to mark the 50th anniversary of the establishment of bilateral diplomatic ties.
On Jan. 27, 1964, late Chairman Mao Zedong and General Charles de Gaulle took the historic decision to establish diplomatic relations, which heralded a new era in China-Europe relations, Xi noted in his congratulatory message.
As permanent members of the UN Security Council, both China and France are countries with independent spirit as well as major forces in promoting world multi-polarization, economic globalization and the democratization of international relations, said the Chinese president.
He said the sound, stable and long-term development of China-France relations is in line with the fundamental interests of the two peoples and also conducive to world peace and development.
China highly values its relations with France, and is willing to take the 50th anniversary of their diplomatic ties as a good opportunity to lift their relations to a higher level, Xi said.
Hollande, for his part, said that France was the first major western country to establish diplomatic relations at the ambassadorial level with China, and General de Gaulle made the great decision because the two countries shared an unbending spirit of independence.
China’s unprecedented development over the past decades showed that his decision was quite visionary and far-sighted, Hollande added.
He said that independent spirit, along with mutual respect and placing high value on sovereignty and multilateralism, constituted an unshakable cornerstone for China-France relations.
China will play an increasingly important role in global affairs, he said, voicing hope that the two countries will strengthen their coordination in global issues and make concerted efforts to safeguard world multi-polarization and deal with various crises and global challenges in a bid to create new splendor in the development of bilateral ties. PNA