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Li Keqiang Holds Talks with Prime Minister John Key of New Zealand, Stressing to Conduct In-Depth Docking of Development Strategies, Facilitate Improvement and Upgrading of Mutually Beneficial Cooperation and Promote Regional Economic Integration and World Economic Growth

On the afternoon of April 18, 2016, Premier Li Keqiang met at the Great Hall of the People with Prime Minister John Key of New Zealand who was on an official visit in China.

Li Keqiang expressed that China and New Zealand have witnessed continuous and rapid development in bilateral relations, with steadily expanding areas and continuously improving level of mutually beneficial cooperation. China-New Zealand relations take the lead in China's relations with developed countries. China is willing to, together with New Zealand, deepen political mutual trust, enhance high-level exchanges and lead practical cooperation to make the development of China-New Zealand comprehensive strategic partnership better serve the well-beings of the two peoples.

Li Keqiang pointed out that with current sluggish world economy recovery, stimulating economic growth has become a priority for every country, which requires all sides to intensify macro policy coordination and work together to maintain a peaceful and stable international and regional environment. China stands ready to work with New Zealand to continue to give full play to the boosting effect of the Free Trade Agreement (FTA), create conditions for an early start of negotiations on the FTA upgrade, and expand cooperation in the whole industrial chain of agriculture and animal husbandry in sections including investment, scientific research, management and food safety and establish an enduring and stable cooperative partnership. China encourages its enterprises to exploit their advantages and actively engage in New Zealand's infrastructure projects, and welcomes enterprises from New Zealand to expand investment in various fields in China. Both sides should carry out closer communication and cooperation in people-to-people and cultural exchanges such as tourism and education, deepen dialogues and cooperation on judiciary and law enforcement, strengthen communication and coordination in international affairs, and work together to promote the process of regional economic integration and contribute to the continuous growth of global and regional economy.

Li Keqiang briefed on China's current economic situation upon request and stated that China's economy has shown positive signs for some time. In particular, domestic demand such as consumption and investment has seen a faster growth than that of the fourth quarter of last year. China's economy is operating within a reasonable range, and major international institutions harbor positive expectations to it. Of course, due to factors like the overall downturn of world economy, there are much more to be done to maintain the forward momentum of China's economy. We need to apply policy instruments flexibly, consolidate and expand positive factors, develop new economies, create new drivers and transform and upgrade traditional driving forces to maintain a medium-high economic growth rate and elevate the economy to a medium-high level.

John Key expressed that he was glad to pay the sixth visit to China and has witnessed new achievements in China's development during each trip. New Zealand-China relations have made substantial progress and maintained a strong momentum, with continuous expansion of cooperation in various fields such as trade, investment, tourism and education. New Zealand attaches great importance to developing relations with China, respects the core interests of China and supports China's role in international affairs. Upholding the spirit of mutual benefit and win-win results, New Zealand is willing to further strengthen cooperation with China in areas such as agriculture and animal husbandry, actively promote bilateral negotiations on upgrading the FTA and inject new impetus into the development of comprehensive strategic partnership between the two countries.

Both sides also exchanged views on international and regional topics of common interests.

Prior to the talks, Li Keqiang held a welcome ceremony for John Key at the square outside the East Gate of the Great Hall of the People. Vice Chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) Wang Jiarui and others attended the ceremony.

After the talks, the Chinese Premier and New Zealand Prime Minister witnessed together the signing of several bilateral cooperation documents covering areas such as agriculture, scientific research, quality inspection, finance and education.

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