PARIS, Sept. 22 (Xinhua) -- Chinese Ambassador to France Lu Shaye on Tuesday highlighted three priority areas for Sino-French cooperation -- strengthening anti-epidemic cooperation, promoting economic and trade ties and upholding multilateralism.
"The relations between China and France are among the most stable relations between major countries in the world," said Lu at a press conference, noting that the two countries have demonstrated a high level of strategic coordination in the fight against COVID-19.
Personnel exchanges between China and France are resuming quickly -- nearly 1,000 French nationals have arrived in China through the "fast track", and six civil flights have been resumed each week linking the two countries, he added.
The ambassador made these remarks when meeting Chinese and French press ahead of the 71st anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China, to be celebrated on Oct. 1. Due to the epidemic, the embassy will not host a reception this year.
China has achieved a major victory in the national fight against the epidemic but the the pandemic is not yet completely under control around the world, Lu noted.
"Vaccines are an important weapon in beating the epidemic. Nine vaccines developed by China have entered the clinical trial phase, and four of them have been approved for phase III clinical trials abroad. China will make its vaccines a global public good when they are finally developed, and thereby do its part in ensuring the accessibility and affordability of vaccines," he said.
Apart from strengthening anti-epidemic cooperation, said the ambassador, China and France need to accelerate cooperation on major projects in nuclear energy, aeronautics and aerospace, actively foster new growth areas for cooperation in smart cities, electric vehicles, organic agrifood and more, implement the Beijing Call for Biodiversity Conservation and Climate Change, and ensure the success of the COP15 of the Convention on Biological Diversity in Kunming and the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) World Conservation Congress in Marseille.
On the challenges posed by Cold War mentality, anti-globalization, protectionism and "digital iron curtain", Lu stressed that multilateralism is the only option.
"This year marks the 75th anniversary of the founding of the United Nations. China will take this opportunity to uphold and promote multilateralism, work with the rest of the world to advance global governance in the post-epidemic era, and build a community with a shared future for mankind," he said.
Noting that this year also marks the 45th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and the European Union (EU), the ambassador reiterated that China and Europe need each other.
"China and the EU have different social systems and development paths, but this has never been an obstacle to our cooperation," he noted.
Despite the impact of COVID-19, China and the EU have maintained close communication and coordination this year. Last week, the leaders of China, Germany and the EU held a video conference, which charted the way forward for China-EU relations and defined key areas for cooperation.
The two sides formally signed an agreement on geographical indications and agreed to speed up negotiations on a China-EU investment agreement with a view to concluding it by the end of this year, and to build together a green partnership and a digital cooperative partnership.
"As long as China and the EU adhere to peaceful coexistence, openness and cooperation, multilateralism, and dialogue and consultation, China-EU relations will surely grow to a higher level in the next 45 years," said the ambassador. Enditem