Meaningful visits

Updated: 2013-05-20 07:25

(China Daily)

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Premier Li Keqiang's first trip abroad as China's new head of government has drawn attention both at home and abroad. His trip, which spans two continents, embodies the new leadership's vision of China's multifaceted diplomacy, as well as its commitment to peace and development.

From May 19 to 27, Li is paying official visits to India, Pakistan, Switzerland and Germany. It will be a good chance for China to build political mutual trust, expand pragmatic economic cooperation and deepen cultural and people-to-people exchanges.

That Li starts his trip with India and Pakistan shows the importance China attaches to developing constructive ties with its neighbors. While Beijing and New Delhi are well aware of the significance of maintaining constructive engagement, their relations have proven vulnerable to a lack of trust. Face-to-face communication is always the best way to build mutual trust.

Intensive cooperation between China and the two major players in the South Asia subcontinent not only caters to the interests of all three, but also contributes to regional peace and development.

Li's visit to Pakistan comes at an important time, as Pakistan has just concluded a general election. There could not be a better chance for the two sides to compare notes and inject new vitality into their all-weather and special friendship.

Apart from strengthening political ties with India and Pakistan, cooperation in economic and trade fields is also expected to feature prominently on Li's agenda this week.

As to Li's visit to Europe later this week, it is expected to be a showcase for a model of friendly exchanges between countries with different social systems.

Both Switzerland and Germany are economically complementary to China. China's huge market has provided great business opportunities for Switzerland and Germany, while Europe's advanced technologies will help China achieve its economic transformation. Expanding cooperation in the fields of trade, finance, technology and culture will bring real benefits to the two peoples and help Europe in its fight against the lingering debt crisis.

With the world facing many challenges, such as climate change, the crisis in Syria and the Iranian nuclear standoff, China is also looking to exchange views and coordinate its stance with European countries on the world stage.

We have every reason to place high hopes on Li's ongoing four-nation visit to South Asia and Europe.

(China Daily 05/20/2013 page10)