Xi thanks Clinton for furthering ties

Updated: 2013-11-19 00:41

By Qin Jize in Beijing and Qiu Quanlin in Guangzhou (China Daily)

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Xi thanks Clinton for furthering ties

Chinese President Xi Jinping (R) meets with former US President Bill Clinton at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, capital of China, Nov 18, 2013. [Photo/Xinhua]

Former US president voices support for China's new reform package

In a Monday meeting with former United States president Bill Clinton, President Xi Jinping thanked Clinton for his efforts in furthering relations, both during and after his tenure.

Xi noted the Clinton Foundation's charitable works in China as well as Clinton's efforts to reduce poverty and help develop healthcare, particularly in the prevention of HIV/AIDS. He said developing Sino-US ties requires the support and participation of people from all walks of life in both countries.

"I hope Mr Clinton and his foundation will continue to make contributions and mobilize more people to devote themselves to the cause of bilateral friendship and cooperation," Xi said.

The Chinese president said China-US relations have moved in the right direction to yield positive results.

"Thanks to joint efforts from generations of Chinese and US leaders, bilateral ties have turned into a skyscraper. We need to work together to do more to further push forward the relationship," he said.

Clinton congratulated Xi and the nation on their success in passing sweeping reforms at the Third Plenary Session of the 18th Communist Party of China Central Committee and voiced support for China's new comprehensive plan.

He said he cherished bilateral ties that feature sincerity, mutual trust and constructive cooperation, adding that the two countries should work together to deal with global challenges.

Clinton said his foundation will urge bilateral cooperation in healthcare, new energy, environmental protection, climate change and in developing Africa's economy.

Before his meeting with Xi, Clinton was in Guangzhou, capital of Guangdong province, to attend the Global Summit of SME Leaders on Sunday.

In his keynote speech, Clinton said China should give higher priority to developing small and medium-sized businesses to increase jobs and boost domestic demand.

"China has vast resources of natural gas that can be tapped through small business operations. The government should have higher standards to make sure that pollution is not caused by such operations," Clinton said.

If small and medium-sized enterprises invest more in the clean energy sector, they will generate even higher economic growth for China in the years ahead, Clinton said. China's economic growth reform and the country's urbanization drive will create vast opportunities for these businesses, Clinton added.

"It is a good time to be in a small or medium-sized business in China. China's shift to internal growth and its urbanization process, which will make at least 60 percent of its population live in cities in the next few years, are bringing about huge business opportunities," Clinton said.

Clinton called for more cooperation between small and medium-sized enterprises around the world to tackle the current shortage of natural resources and climate change.

Clinton said his foundation will urge bilateral cooperation in healthcare and new energy, but added that the two countries should work together to deal with global challenges.

In its recent reforms, Chinese officials said the government will throw more support behind the private sector, which they say plays an important role in fostering growth, promoting innovation, expanding employment and increasing tax revenues.

Contact the writers at qinjize@chinadaily.com.cn and qiuquanlin@chinadaily.com.cn