To Consolidate Friendship, Build Mutual Trust, Deepen Cooperation and Seek Common Development
--Zhang Zhijun talks about the outcome of Vice Premier Li Keqiang's visit to the DPRK and the ROK
Li Keqiang, member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Chinese Communist Party (CPC) Central Committee and Vice Premier of the State Council, paid an official goodwill visit to the DPRK from October 23 to 25 and an official visit to the ROK from October 26 to 27. As Vice Premier Li's trip was coming to an end, Vice Foreign Minister Zhang Zhijun, who accompanied Li during the visit, introduced to the accompanying journalists the outcome of Li's visit on October 27, 2011.
Zhang said Li's visit came at a time when China's friendly cooperation with the DPRK and the ROK was facing new development opportunities, and the situation on the Korean Peninsula and in Northeast Asia was turning for the better. It was also a major diplomatic move to build up China-DPRK, China-ROK strategic mutual trust, deepen pragmatic cooperation in all fields and promote peace and stability in Northeast Asia, he said. During the past five days, Li held intensive and fruitful meetings with the leadership of both the DPRK and ROK, and extensively communicated with people from all walks of life in both countries, Zhang said. Both the DPRK and the ROK extended high-level courtesy and warm and friendly reception and the international media paid close attention to the visit, which yielded fruitful results.
I. Consolidate China-DPRK traditional friendship and deepen mutually beneficial cooperation
In the past several years, China and the DPRK have maintained close high-level contact, which has deepened their strategic mutual trust and advanced friendly cooperation. During Vice Premier Li's stay in the DPRK, he met with General Secretary of the Workers' Party of Korea Kim Jong Il as well as President of the DPRK Supreme People's Assembly Kim Yong Nam, and held talks with DPRK Premier Choe Yong Rim. Li said bilateral friendship was precious to the two parties, two countries and two peoples. China had always handled its relationship with the DPRK from strategic and long-term perspectives. China would like to work with the DPRK to carry out the important consensus reached by the top leaders of the two sides based on the spirit of inheriting the tradition, looking to the future, promoting good-neighborly friendship and strengthening cooperation, advance the traditional friendship and enrich bilateral friendly and pragmatic cooperation to take bilateral ties into ever new stages. He urged the two sides to maintain exchange of visits between the two countries' leadership and high-level contacts, adding that both countries should promote steady and rapid trade growth and new progress in key cooperation projects to realize common development. The two sides should also launch exchanges and cooperation in such fields as education and culture as well as between nongovernmental organizations and at local levels to further strengthen the bilateral friendship, Li said, adding they needed to step up coordination and cooperation in handling international and regional affairs. Vice Premier Li congratulated the DPRK on its new achievements in socialist construction and appreciated the DPRK's efforts in developing economy and improving people's livelihood. He expressed belief that under the leadership of General Secretary Kim Jong Il and the Workers' Party of Korea, the DPRK people will surely be able to achieve greater results on the road to fulfilling national development goals.
During the visit, Vice Premier Li visited the friendship tower, paid tribute to the late leader Kim Il Sung's mortal remains, visited DPRK-China Friendship Thaekam Cooperative Farm and held cordial talks with students of Kim Il Sung University in Pyongyang. All this demonstrates the great importance China attaches to the overall development of China-DPRK relations and bilateral agricultural and educational cooperation.
Kim Jong Il and other DPRK leaders extended their warm congratulations on the 90th anniversary of the founding of the Communist Party of China (CPC) and the success of the sixth plenary session of the 17th Central Committee of the CPC, saying the DPRK was encouraged and happy to see what China had achieved during its socialist construction. DPRK-China relations have withstood the test of time and have become firmer. The ties have achieved greater development at a higher level in recent years. It is an unswerving policy of the Workers' Party of Korea and the DPRK government to continue to push forward bilateral relations, as it is in line with the fundamental interests of the two parties and two countries. The two sides should continue to consolidate the traditional friendship, deepen pragmatic cooperation in economy, trade, mining, infrastructure construction and other areas and strengthen friendship for generations to enable bilateral relations to bear more fruitful results.
II. Push for new development for China-ROK strategic cooperative partnership
China-ROK relations have maintained a sound growth momentum in recent years with exchanges and cooperation on politics, economy, trade and humanities advancing steadily. During his visit to the ROK, Vice Premier Li Keqiang met with ROK President Lee Myung-bak and Parliament Speaker Park Hee-tae and held talks with his ROK counterpart Kim Hwang-sik. Li said China has always proceeded from a strategic and long-term perspective in handing bilateral ties and seen developing a long-term stable and mutually beneficial strategic cooperative partnership with the ROK as one of its diplomatic priorities. China is willing to work with the ROK in bringing about ever new development of bilateral ties. Both sides should maintain high-level contacts, promote political mutual trust and grasp the overall direction of friendship and cooperation in bilateral ties, Li said. The vice premier also suggested both sides strengthen macroeconomic policy coordination and jointly cope with complex changes in the world economy. He urged both sides to expand their cooperation in finance and pollution-free industries, accelerate the construction of a free trade zone and expand the bilateral currency swap scale from 180 billion yuan (28 billion U.S. dollars) to 360 billion yuan (56 billion U.S. dollars). Efforts should be made to encourage two-way investment and create favorable conditions to push bilateral economic and trade cooperation to a new level. He called on both sides to continue to broaden cultural exchanges and consolidate the friendship between both peoples. China will invite 300 more ROK youth to the country from next year and dispatch 1,400 Chinese teachers to the ROK before 2015. Both sides should also increase coordination and collaboration in international and regional multilateral mechanisms.
President Lee Myung-bak and other ROK leaders spoke highly of the development of bilateral ties and appreciated that China backed the ROK to hold the 2012 World Expo in its city of Yeosu. They also said both the ROK and China should take next year's 20th anniversary of the establishment of China-ROK diplomatic ties as an opportunity and give full play to their advantage as close neighbors to stimulate exchanges and cooperation in all sectors and take bilateral relationship to a new level. The ROK will maintain high-level exchanges with China and push bilateral pragmatic cooperation in the economic and trade sector for greater development. The ROK hopes to be actively engaged in the implementation of China's 12th five-year-plan (2011-2015) and advance bilateral cooperation in such sectors as electronic information, biology, environmental protection and new energy. The ROK also expects to deepen people-to-people friendship with China, expand youth and media exchange, ramp up its cooperation in international affairs with China, and jointly tackle challenges such as the international financial crisis, terrorism and climate change, Zhang said.
III. Promote peace talks, advance denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and maintain peace and stability in Northeast Asia
Zhang said Vice Premier Li Keqiang had an extensive exchange of views with leaders of the DPRK and the ROK concerning the current situation on the peninsula. With the joint efforts of all parties concerned, tensions on the peninsula had eased recently and there had already been some beneficial contacts among some parties, Li said. He also said maintaining peace and stability on the peninsula and in Northeast Asia was in line with the common interests of parties involved and negotiation still remained the only correct path towards a solution to the nuclear issue on the peninsula. All parties should make further efforts to maintain and consolidate the momentum of dialogue. China supports parties concerned to maintain contact and dialogue, strive for positive results and promote the early resumption of the six-party talks in order to effectively safeguard peace and stability in Northeast Asia and promote the denuclearization of the peninsula. China will continue to play a constructive role and make unremitting efforts to this end. China sincerely supports the DPRK and the ROK to improve relations through dialogue and achieve reconciliation, cooperation and common development.
Both the DPRK and the ROK spoke highly of China's important and positive role in preserving peace and stability on the peninsula, Zhang said. Kim Jong Il and other DPRK leaders said their country expected an early resumption of the Six-Party Talks with no pre-conditions attached. They also called on all sides to achieve a comprehensive and balanced implementation of the Sept. 19 joint statement and advance denuclearization on the principle of simultaneous action. ROK leaders said the Six-Party Talks were of great significance to resolving the concerns of all parties concerned, adding they were willing to work with all other parties in maintaining peace and stability on the peninsula, and promoting the denuclearization process. They also hope to engage in a candid dialogue with the DPRK side and improve the South-North relationship, Zhang said.
IV. Publicize development achievements of China's various undertakings and the concept of peaceful development
In his meetings with DPRK, ROK leaders, his speeches and contacts with business, education, youth and friendship groups, Vice Premier Li introduced China's current major domestic policies and development outcomes, as well as China's adherence to the road of peaceful development and win-win strategy of opening up. Vice Premier Li said that this year is the 90th anniversary of the founding of the Communist Party of China, as well as the first year of China's 12th Five-Year Plan. In face of the complex and volatile international economic and financial situation and new features of the domestic economic and social development, the Chinese government has strengthened and improved macro-control and well handled the relationship between rapid and steady economic development, economic restructuring and management of inflation expectations. China has maintained a good momentum of economic and social development. In the next few years, the Chinese government will continue to promote scientific development, accelerate the transformation of economic development mode, deepen reform and opening, ensure and improve people's livelihood and promote long-term stable and rapid economic growth as well as social harmony and stability. China's development is inseparable from the world, while the world's prosperity and stability can't go without China. China will unswervingly follow the road of peaceful development, adhere to the principle of treating its neighbors well and as partners and be committed to developing friendly cooperation with neighboring countries.
Li's visit and a series of speeches he made during the five-day trip had been well received in the two countries and the international media, which spoke highly of China's development and its important role as a responsible power in preserving regional and world peace and promoting common development. They also appreciated China's active efforts in coping with the international financial crisis, Zhang said.
Zhang noted Li's visit had been very successful and achieved its expected goal of promoting friendship, mutual trust, cooperation and common development. He also said China would like to join with the DPRK and the ROK in implementing the outcome reached during the visit, maintaining exchange of high-level visits, deepening cooperation of mutual benefit, expanding the scope of exchanges, and promoting friendly cooperation to contribute to peace, stability and development on the peninsula and in Northeast Asia.