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China considers Cyprus a ‘strategic partner’

April 26, 2019 at 8:49am
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China considers Cyprus a strategic partner, President Xi Jinping told President Nicos Anastasiades during a meeting in Beijing, expressing at the same time its unwavering support in efforts for a solution to the Cyprus problem.

A Cyprus Presidency statement said that during the meeting, the excellent political relations between the two countries were reconfirmed while bilateral agreements were signed.

President Anastasiades is in the Chinese capital to participate in the Belt and Road forum, an initiative of the Chinese President based on the Silk Road.

China’s President said his country supports and will continue to support the Cyprus positions, that include maintaining the presence of UNFICYP on the island.

He said his country is interested in studying the trilateral partnerships Cyprus maintains in Eastern Mediterranean, noting that the two countries can extend their partnership in sectors such as renewable resources of energy, telecommunications and culture.

He also said that soon China intends to create a Cultural Centre on the island and underlined that his country wishes to strengthen relations with Cyprus in all sectors. The Republic of Cyprus, he added, is a reliable partner and good friend of China, they maintain the same principles and there is deep understanding on a number of issues between the two countries. At the same time, he said that the Republic of Cyprus contributes to the healthy relations between Cyprus and the EU.

He thanked President Anastasiades for his work for the “Belt and Road” Initiative and pointed out the significant geographic position of Cyprus at the crossroads of three continents.

The Chinese President further described Cyprus a strategic partner, noting the prospects to deepen bilateral relations in various sectors, adding that next November a Cyprus delegation will be in China to take part in Expo.

On his part, President Anastasiades referred to the current situation on the Cyprus problem and asked for China’s contribution in efforts to find a viable and functional solution for the benefit of the people of the island. He also briefed his Chinese counterpart on the efforts of the UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Cyprus to resume the talks.

He thanked the President and China for their unwavering support to the Republic of Cyprus and the positions of principle they maintain on Cyprus, noting that Cyprus continues to maintain the principle of a “One China”.

Referring to bilateral relations, President Anastasiades underlined the Republic’s dedication to reinforcing the fields of commerce, investment, economy and tourism adding that there has been an increase in tourist arrivals in the last year.

Anastasiades further assured his Chinese counterpart that Cyprus is one of China’s best ambassadors in the EU in developing its relations with the Union.

The meeting was also attended by Minister of Education and Culture Costas Hambiaouris, Minister of Transport, Communications and Works Vassiliki Anastasiades, Deputy Minister of Tourism Savvas Perdios, Government Spokesman Prodromos Prodromou and government officials.

In the framework of bilateral cooperation the two ministers signed Memoranda of Understanding on Education and Cultural Cooperation for the period 2019-2020 and on Cooperation in the Framework of the Economic Belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road.

(Cyprus News Agency)