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Xi Jinping Holds Talks with President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom of Maldives

On December 7, 2017, President Xi Jinping held talks at the Great Hall of the People with President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom of Maldives, who was in China for a state visit.

Xi Jinping pointed out that Maldives is a member of the neighboring extended family of China, and both countries enjoy a traditional friendship. Mr. President is the first head of state of a neighboring country to visit China after the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC). Since the establishment of diplomatic relations 45 years ago, both countries have treated each other equally, lived in a friendly manner, shared win-win cooperation, and understood and supported each other on issues concerning respective core interests and major concerns, and bilateral relations have always enjoyed healthy and stable development. In recent years, bilateral relations have entered a rapid development track and the two countries have established a future-oriented comprehensive friendly and cooperative partnership. The “Belt and Road” initiative proposed by me is highly consistent with development strategies of Maldives proposed by Mr. President in making use of the country’s location advantage and realizing economic take-off. China appreciates Maldives for its active participation in the “Belt and Road” construction, and regards the country as an important cooperative partner in the construction of the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road. China is willing to integrate development strategies and share development opportunities with Maldives, in a bid to achieve common prosperity.

Xi Jinping stressed that under the new situation, both sides should promote relations between both countries for continuous development and add new impetus to the common development. Both sides need to enhance high-level contacts, cement policy communication, well make top design and guidance for the development of China-Maldives relations, and strengthen exchanges of experience on state governance and administration, as well as friendly exchanges between government departments, political parties, legislative and judiciary bodies. The two sides should take the signing of a memorandum of understanding between the two governments on jointly promoting the “Belt and Road” construction, and of a China-Maldives free trade agreement as an opportunity to stimulate the vitality of bilateral economic and trade cooperation, jointly advance the smooth completion of related major cooperative projects and boost cooperation in such areas as investment, finance and ocean. The two countries should enhance cooperation in counter-terrorism, anti-drug and combating crime, expand exchanges and cooperation in tourism, culture, education, health care, and at local levels, and boost people-to-people bonds. China is willing to, together with Maldives, continue taking practical actions, promote international cooperation, and jointly deal with climate change in a bid to realize green, low-carbon and sustainable development. It is hoped that Maldives to continuously support the enhancement of China's cooperation with the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation, and to facilitate development and prosperity of the South Asian region.

Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom congratulated on the successful convening of the 19th CPC National Congress and Xi Jinping’s re-election as General Secretary of the CPC Central Committee. He believed that the Chinese people will definitely achieve the two centenary goals under the leadership of the CPC Central Committee with Xi Jinping at the core. Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom stressed that China is an important and reliable cooperative partner of Maldives. President Xi Jinping’s state visit to Maldives in 2014 vigorously elevated the relationship between both countries to new stages. He thanked China’s strong supports to the national development of Maldives. China’s “Belt and Road” initiative has also greatly promoted the development of the vast small and medium countries. Maldives firmly adheres to the one-China policy. On the occasion of the 45th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between both countries, Maldives is willing to deepen friendship and consolidate cooperation in infrastructure, people's livelihood and other areas with China. The country expects that China could play a bigger role in global affairs and is ready to enhance communication and coordination with China.

After the talks, the two heads of state jointly witnessed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding on Jointly Promoting the “Belt and Road” Construction between the Government of the People’s Republic of China and the Government of the Republic of Maldives, and a Free Trade Agreement between the Government of the People’s Republic of China and the Government of the Republic of Maldives, and bilateral cooperative documents in such areas as economy, technology, human resources development, oceans, environment, health care and finance.

Prior to the talks, Xi Jinping held a welcome ceremony for Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom at the North Hall of the Great Hall of the People. Xi Jinping’s wife, Mme. Peng Liyuan, Member of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee, Member of the Secretariat of the CPC Central Committee and Director of the General Office of the CPC Central Committee Ding Xuexiang, Member of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee and State Councilor Yang Jiechi, Vice Chairman of the Standing Committee of National People's Congress Qiangba Puncog, Vice Chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference Wang Zhengwei and others were present.

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