17+1 cooperation strengthens China-Czech ties: officials

By Dong Feng Source:Global Times Published: 2019/9/26 11:31:48

Former President of the Czech Republic, Václav Klaus, Qin Gang, China's vice minister of foreign affairs, and the Ambassador of the Czech Republic to the People's Republic of China, Vladimír Tomšík, toast at the 2019 Czech Days on Thursday in Beijing. (Photo: Dong Feng/GT)

Relations between China and the Czech Republic will continue to evolve just as it's done for the past 70 years, as officials from both countries said during the 2019 Czech Days on Thursday in Beijing. 

Czech Republic Ambassador to China, Vladimír Tomšík, summarized the 70-year relationship with four milestones, including Czech was one of the first countries that admitted the People's Republic of China (PRC) in 1949 just after the country was founded, and both countries committed to a strategic partnership in 2016, thanks to the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). 

There is still room to explore further cooperation from both countries, former Czech President, Václav Klaus, said during the event as many businesses are looking into opportunities in China. Such people-to-people exchanges have deepened in the past seven decades. 

"I can see Chinese tourists in Prague," Klaus said. 

Foreign Affairs Vice Minister Qin Gang was also in attendance and delivered a speech echoing the strong cultural exchanges between both sides. "For my generation, we grew up watching cartoons from the Czech Republic," Qin said. 

"Now the younger generation is even more lucky, besides watching these cartoons, they can fly there on and visit the beautiful country," he noted.

Qin also emphasized that regardless of a few trade imbalances, China is pleased that more Chinese nationals are visiting the Czech Republic, which makes up for any disparities. With the second China International Import Expo (CIIE) set to open in November, Czech enterprises will have more opportunities to introduce high-quality and unique products to Chinese consumers eager to have more options.

Qin also showed his respect for Klaus, who has been a key contributor to China-Czech relations. "We hope more people will foster the traditional friendship between our two countries," Qin added. 

The vice minister also urged that while celebrating the 70th anniversary of bilateral ties, both sides need to work together to preserve multilateralism and free trade for world peace and prosperity. 

Czech Days is a series of activities aimed at promoting the Czech Republic in areas of cooperation among Czech-China relations and is held throughout selected regions across the country. 

The events are connected to high-level state visits from the Czech Republic and presented to key political partners in China, to business associations and institutions, and to Chinese companies that foster continued cooperation.


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