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UPDATED: July 22, 2014
China, Venezuela Lift Ties to Comprehensive Strategic Partnership

Chinese President Xi Jinping and his Venezuelan counterpart Nicolas Maduro agreed in Caracas on Sunday to upgrade their countries' relations to a comprehensive strategic partnership. China and Venezuela are good friends of mutual trust and good partners of mutual benefits, Xi said at a meeting with Maduro.

China cherishes the contributions made by late Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez to the development of bilateral ties, and appreciates Maduro for his inheriting the former leadership's friendly policy toward China, Xi said.

Noting that this year marks the 40th anniversary of the establishment of bilateral ties, Xi said China-Venezuela relations are at an important stage that connects the past to the future.

Xi put forward a four-point proposal to lift China-Venezuela relations to a partnership that features strategic mutual trust, comprehensive cooperation, mutual benefits and win-win results, as well as common development.

First, Xi called on the two countries' heads of state to maintain frequent contacts, and their governments, parties and legislatures to beef up exchanges, so as to strengthen strategic planning, deepen political mutual trust and continue to support each other on issues concerning their core interests.

Second, China and Venezuela should work for concrete results.

Xi urged the two countries to strengthen top-level design to develop a multi-tiered cooperation in the fields of finance, investment and energy.

The two countries should make good use of their existing mechanism in financing to promote cooperation in the areas of mining, infrastructure construction and science and technology.

Xi said China is ready to expand satellite technology transfer to Venezuela and encourage Chinese companies to participate in the construction of Venezuela's special economic zone.

Third, Xi urged the two countries to expand exchanges and communication. China and Venezuela should take the 40th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties as an opportunity to boost cooperation in culture, education, tourism and media, in a bid to consolidate public support for bilateral ties.

Fourth, Xi called on China and Venezuela to address their bilateral ties in a broader context of China-Latin America relations, cooperation among developing countries, and peace and development of the world as a whole.

China is ready to work with Venezuela to promote cooperation between Beijing and Latin America at large.

The two sides should also enhance coordination and cooperation in such international issues as global economic governance, energy security and climate change, in a bid to increase the voices of the developing countries and promote a fairer and more rational world order, Xi said.

For his part, Maduro said China and Venezuela are enjoying solid mutual political trust and the two countries are sharing identical views on numerous issues.

"We...admire the great achievements China has made in the cause of socialism with Chinese characteristics and believe that China will play a greater role in promoting world peace and development," he said.

The Venezuelan president said he would inherit the will of Chavez and strengthen all-round cooperation with China.

"I agree to the proposals made by President Xi in the talks and hope to keep close contacts with him so as to advance the bilateral cooperation," he said.

Maduro said that Venezuela welcomes Chinese enterprises to expand investment in his country, particularly in petrochemical industry and the construction of its special economic zones.

Maduro also briefed Xi on Venezuela's domestic situation. He said that Venezuela is engaged in maintaining domestic stability, promoting economic growth and strengthening capabilities of the ruling party.

Xi stressed that China "respects the development path taken by Venezuela, which is suited to its national conditions."

China supports the efforts made by the Venezuelan government to maintain domestic stability and believes that the Venezuelan government and people are capable of well handling its domestic issues, maintaining its harmony and ensuring economic and social development, Xi said.

"China, along with Venezuela, is willing to learn from each other on governance and exchange experience on party construction," Xi said.

The two leaders also exchanged views on regional hot spot issues.

Before their talks, Xi laid a wreath at the tomb of the late South America liberator Simon Bolivar.

The Chinese president arrived here earlier in the day for a state visit to Venezuela, the third leg of his four-nation Latin America tour which will also take him to Cuba. He has paid state visits to Brazil and Argentina.

(Xinhua News Agency July 20, 2014)

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