On March 20, 2012, Vice Foreign Minister Xie Hangsheng, at invitation, attended the reception on the 40th anniversary of ambassador-level diplomatic ties between China and the UK co-hosted by the Chinese People's Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries and the British embassy in China.
During the reception, Xie held talks with British ambassador to China Sebastian Wood on the bilateral relations and other issues of common concern. Xie spoke highly of the long-term progress of China-UK relations over the past 40 years and hopes the two sides take the opportunity of the anniversary to review the past, plan the future and promote greater achievements of China-UK all-round strategic partnership. Wood said that the UK-China exchanges and cooperation at present is unprecedentedly wide and deep. He believes that with the joint efforts of both sides UK-China relations will embrace another brighter 40 years.