China Focus: Xi's Papua New Guinea, Brunei, Philippines visits to cement bilateral ties, Asia-Pacific cooperation

Source: Xinhua| 2018-11-14 00:32:54|Editor: Mu Xuequan
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BEIJING, Nov. 13 (Xinhua) -- Chinese President Xi Jinping's visits to Papua New Guinea, Brunei, and the Philippines from Nov. 15 to 21 will facilitate Asia-Pacific cooperation and intensify bilateral ties, senior officials said on Tuesday.

Xi will pay a state visit to Papua New Guinea from Nov. 15 to 16, Vice Foreign Minister Zheng Zeguang told a press briefing.

During his visit, Xi will meet with leaders from eight Pacific island countries, which have established diplomatic ties with China, in Papua New Guinea's capital city of Port Moresby, according to Zheng. The countries include Papua New Guinea, Fiji, Samoa, Vanuatu, the Federated States of Micronesia, the Cook Islands, Tonga and Niue.

It will be the first time for a Chinese head of state to visit Papua New Guinea, Zheng added.

The trip is expected to inject strong impetus to China's cooperation with these countries and exert long-lasting and positive influence on peace, stability, and development of the region, Zheng said.

According to Zheng, Xi's upcoming meetings with leaders of the Pacific island countries will be held bilaterally and collectively.

"President Xi will deliver a keynote speech to expound on China's policies toward the Pacific island countries based on the approach of upholding justice and pursuing shared interests and the principles of sincerity, real results, affinity and good faith, and announce major cooperation measures to support the island countries' development," Zheng added.

Noting that the Pacific island countries are all developing countries, Zheng said Xi's visit will cement the friendship between China and developing countries and inject strong impetus into the building of a community with a shared future for humanity.

Xi will make his first state visits to Brunei and the Philippines from Nov. 18 to 21, Vice Foreign Minister Kong Xuanyou said at the press briefing.

Xi and Brunei's Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah will have an in-depth exchange of views on bilateral ties and regional and international issues of common concern, and outline mutually beneficial cooperation between the two countries in various areas, according to Kong.

The two countries are expected to publish a joint statement to intensify their joint construction of the Belt and Road and people-to-people exchanges, Kong added.

During his visit to the Philippines, Xi will hold talks with Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte, and meet with President of the Senate Vicente Sotto III and House of Representatives Speaker Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, Kong said.

"At present, mutual trust between China and the Philippines has constantly improved," said Kong, stressing the two countries will continue to deal with the South China Sea issue through dialogue and consultation and support each other on regional and multilateral occasions.

A joint statement is going to be announced as the two sides are preparing cooperation documents on trade, infrastructure, and people-to-people exchanges, according to Kong.

In Papua New Guinea, Xi will also attend the 26th Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Economic Leaders' Meeting from Nov. 17 to 18, in the capital city of Port Moresby.

Xi will deliver a keynote speech at the APEC CEO summit, give an important speech at the informal meeting of leaders, attend a lunch meeting and the dialogue between APEC leaders and representatives of the APEC Business Advisory Council, and meet leaders of other APEC economies, said Assistant Foreign Minister Zhang Jun.

The leaders will have discussions on topics including regional economic integration, digital economy, connectivity, as well as sustainable and inclusive growth, Zhang said.

Zhang voiced China's hope that the Port Moresby APEC meeting will propel the building of an open economy and safeguard the correct direction of Asia-Pacific future development

"China will work with all parties to safeguard the rule-based multilateral trading system, and push for the building of the Free Trade Area of the Asia-Pacific (FTAAP)," Zhang promised.

China supports the APEC members' efforts in making plans to accelerate digital economy cooperation, Zhang said, adding that a vision on their cooperation as a whole after 2020 is also necessary.

On the economic and trade front, Assistant Commerce Minister Li Chenggang said at the press briefing that the APEC meeting is expected to push for economic and trade connectivity and deepen the cooperation on regional economic integration.