China agrees to cut trade surplus with Spain

27th June 2007, Comments 0 comments

27 June 2007, BEIJING - Spain's King Juan Carlos and Chinese President Hu Jintao agreed a "new phase" in bilateral relations will have as one of its main goals reducing China's whopping trade surplus with the European nation.The two men met in the Great Hall of the People minutes after Hu officially received Juan Carlos and Queen Sofia with the requisite pomp and circumstance in Tiananmen Square.The king thanked his host for the invitation to visit China and said that, after Hu's visit to Spain and that of

27 June 2007

BEIJING - Spain's King Juan Carlos and Chinese President Hu Jintao agreed a "new phase" in bilateral relations will have as one of its main goals reducing China's whopping trade surplus with the European nation.

The two men met in the Great Hall of the People minutes after Hu officially received Juan Carlos and Queen Sofia with the requisite pomp and circumstance in Tiananmen Square.

The king thanked his host for the invitation to visit China and said that, after Hu's visit to Spain and that of Spanish Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero to China - both of which occurred in 2005 - "a new phase in the already-very good relations" was opening between the two nations.

For the two heads of state, the signing in Madrid two years ago of the strategic association accord had great significance because it opened "new horizons in several sectors" in the bilateral relationship, Juan Carlos said.

Hu said that the monarchs' visit "will contribute to fostering with great strength" the bilateral alliance, and he expressed his "greatest willingness" to intensify efforts on a bilateral agenda of common interest.

The Chinese leader said he would move to narrow the trade balance, which currently greatly favors China, and to double bilateral trade, now running at 14 billion euros ($18.8 billion) annually, over the next three years.

To demonstrate that that goal was fully within reach, he offered the figure that Spanish exports to China had increased 54 percent in the first quarter of 2007.

However, currently Spain exports to China each year products valued at 1.67 billion euros, but Madrid imports 14.3 billion euros worth of Chinese goods annually.

Hu said that his country was interested in having more technical cooperation with Spain and, in particular, in collaborating more closely in the areas of telecommunications, the environment and renewable energy sources, and he added that he would support having both countries' firms invest more in the other nation.

After emphasizing the "personal contribution" of Juan Carlos to furthering the bilateral relationship, Hu spoke of the commitment of the Spanish government to a "one-China policy" - in reference to Beijing's dispute with Taiwan over that island's status - and to supporting China in negotiations with the European Union.

The king expressed his wish for Spain to have a space at the 2010 Universal Exposition in Shanghai that would make it possible to broadly display Madrid's image to China, and he also gave his support for the success of that endeavor as well as for the 2008 Olympic Games in the Chinese capital.

[Copyright EFE with Expatica]

Subject: Spanish news

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