China, Bangladesh lift ties to strategic partnership of cooperation

Source:Xinhua Published: 2016/10/15 7:46:23 Last Updated: 2016/10/15 15:19:51

Chinese President Xi Jinping (L) holds talks with Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in Dhaka, Bangladesh, Oct. 14, 2016. (Xinhua/Xie Huanchi)


Chinese President Xi Jinping (L) and Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina attend a press conference after their talks in Dhaka, Bangladesh, Oct. 14, 2016. (Xinhua/Xie Huanchi)


Chinese President Xi Jinping holds talks with Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in Dhaka, Bangladesh, Oct. 14, 2016. (Xinhua/Liu Weibing)


Chinese President Xi Jinping (2nd R) and Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina attend an inauguration for cooperative projects between the two countries after their talks in Dhaka, Bangladesh, Oct. 14, 2016. (Xinhua/Xie Huanchi)

Visiting Chinese President Xi Jinping held talks with Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Friday and the two leaders agreed to upgrade bilateral ties to a strategic partnership of cooperation.

During the meeting, Xi said the closer comprehensive partnership of cooperation the two sides forged in 2010 has yielded fruitful results, with bilateral cooperation advancing steadily in political, economic, cultural and security areas and on international and regional affairs.

China highly values its friendly cooperative ties with Bangladesh and will continue to offer support within its capacity for the economic and social development of the South Asian country, Xi said.

China stands ready to push forward bilateral practical cooperation by aligning the development strategies of the two countries, said the Chinese president.

Noting that China is striving for its "two centenary goals" while Bangladesh is pursuing its "Sonar Bangla" dream of national strength and prosperity, Xi added that the China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative can dovetail with Bangladesh's cooperation strategies with the outside world.

The "two centenary goals" refer to China's aspiration to finish building a moderately prosperous society in all respects by the time the Communist Party of China celebrates its centenary in 2021 and turn the People's Republic of China into a modern socialist country that is prosperous, strong, democratic, culturally advanced, and harmonious by the time it celebrates its centenary in 2049.

Since establishing diplomatic ties 41 years ago, China and Bangladesh have adhered to "the five principles of peaceful co-existence" and have each respected and supported the development path and domestic and foreign policies the other side has undertaken in accordance with its national conditions, said Xi.

Now in their pursuit of development, the two countries should be friends and partners that trust and support each other and advance practical cooperation to reap even richer fruits, so as to inject more impetus into bilateral ties, added the Chinese president.

Hasina, for her part, said the traditional friendship between Bangladesh and China, forged by the two countries' leaders of the older generation, enjoys deeply rooted public support in Bangladesh.

Bangladesh admires China's economic achievement, and is ready to strengthen cooperation with China while pursuing its "Sonar Bangla" dream, said the prime minister.

Bangladesh, she added, is willing to actively work with China within the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative and support the building of an economic corridor linking Bangladesh, China, India and Myanmar, so as to push forward development in various fields such as electricity, energy, technology, agriculture, water resources, investment, transportation infrastructure and connectivity.

The Belt and Road Initiative, proposed by Xi in 2013, comprises the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road. It is aimed at building a trade and infrastructure network connecting Asia with Europe and Africa along the ancient trade routes.

Bangladesh resolutely adheres to the one-China policy and is ready to maintain mutual understanding and support with the Chinese side on issues involving each other's core interests and major concerns, she said.

Meanwhile, the two sides agreed to deepen political mutual trust, enhance high-level exchanges and expand communication at all levels between their governments, legislatures, parties and peoples.

They vowed to strengthen the synergy of their development strategies, fully tap the potential for bilateral cooperation, and jointly push forward the Belt and Road Initiative.

They also pledged to enhance cooperation within the framework of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, expand bilateral trade, and map out new major cooperation projects, especially in such key areas as infrastructure construction, production capacity, energy and power, transportation, information and telecommunication and agriculture.

The two countries also agreed to seek cooperation in new fields including maritime affairs, water resources, and science and technology.

Vowing to strengthen people-to-people exchanges so as to further boost the traditional China-Bangladesh friendship, they designated 2017 as the Year of China-Bangladesh Friendly Exchanges in a bid to expand cooperation in cultural and education areas, boost tourism and facilitate exchanges between their media organizations, youths, women's organizations and local governments.

Besides, the two sides agreed to enhance cooperation within the United Nations and other international organizations, and strengthen coordination on such global issues as development, energy and food security.

They also pledged to boost connectivity, development and prosperity in the region by strengthening multilateral and bilateral cooperation within the framework of South-South cooperation.

After their talks, the two leaders witnessed the signing of a string of cooperation documents covering such areas as the joint building of the Belt and Road Initiative, production capacity cooperation, information and telecommunication, energy and power, diplomatic affairs, maritime affairs, disaster prevention and alleviation, and climate change.

The two sides also issued a joint statement about the upgrading of bilateral ties to the strategic partnership of cooperation.

Xi arrived in Dhaka earlier in the day for a state visit, the first by a Chinese head of state to this South Asian nation in 30 years.

Bangladesh is the second leg of Xi's visit, which already took him to Cambodia. He will also travel to the western Indian state of Goa for a summit of the emerging-market bloc of BRICS, which groups Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.

Posted in: Diplomacy

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