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Xi Jinping Meets with FIFA President Gianni Infantino

On June 14, 2017, President Xi Jinping met with President of the Federation of International Football Association (FIFA) Gianni Infantino at the Great Hall of the People.

Xi Jinping pointed out that building a big sports country and a powerful sports country is an important part of Chinese people’s realization of the “two centenary goals”. Attaching great importance to developing football, the Chinese government provides strong and consistent support for the sport. China lags far behind football powerhouses in terms of modern football’s domestic popularity and competence on the pitch. The essence of football is not only competition, but lies more in the improvement of people's physique and the cultivation of people’s spirit of patriotism, collectivism and tenacity. In recent years, China has been concentrated on making an overall plan for football reform and development, and firmly advancing the reform. China is nurturing football culture in the whole society, deepening reform on football management system, setting up a professional and efficient organization and management system that conforms to the development trend of world football and China’s national conditions, vigorously developing youth football, improving football pitches and other infrastructures, and strengthening international exchanges and learning. The country hopes to raise the standard of Chinese football step by step through solid and consistent efforts, and make the positive football culture become positive energy in Chinese people's pursuit of the Chinese dream.

Appreciating Gianni Infantino for committing to the development of football cause and paying attention to China’s football development since the assumption of his post as FIFA President, Xi Jinping stressed that China will actively support the FIFA’s work, and stands ready to make due contributions to the development of world football. China and the FIFA share broad prospects for cooperation.

Gianni Infantino expressed that the development of football in China is of great importance to world football. President Xi Jinping’s idea about the reform and development of football in China embodies strategic foresight. The FIFA highly appraised the Chinese government for valuing football cause, advancing football reform, and actively promoting nationwide football. China is a high priority in the FIFA’s global development strategy. The FIFA is willing to intensify cooperation with China to push forward the development of the causes of football in China and the whole world.

Vice Premier Liu Yandong and others attended the meeting.

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