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Hu Jintao Holds Talks with President of Maldives Nasheed

On the morning of May 2, 2010, Chinese President Hu Jintao held talks in Shanghai with visiting President of Maldives Mohamed Nasheed, who is here for a state visit and events related to the Shanghai World Expo.

Nasheed warmly congratulated China on the grand opening of the Shanghai World Expo, saying that his country is glad to participate in the Expo. Hu expressed belief that the Expo will create new opportunities for China and Maldives to enhance friendly exchanges and mutually beneficial cooperation.

Hu said the two countries are traditional friendly neighbors and the China-Maldives relations have developed in a continuous, stable and healthy way over the past 38 years since the establishment of diplomatic ties between the two countries. Bilateral mutually beneficial cooperation has been expanding in recent years, bringing tangible benefits to both peoples. China has maintained that all countries, big or small, strong or weak, rich or poor, are all equal members of the international community. China is willing to joint hands with Maldives to strengthen political mutual trust and expand pragmatic cooperation based on the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence in a bid to further develop the good-neighborly friendship and cooperation between the two countries.

Hu raised a four-point proposal on pushing forward China-Maldives relations. First, he called on the two countries to reinforce friendship and strengthen mutual understanding and trust. He said leaders from both countries should maintain contact through various occasions to exchange views in a timely manner on bilateral ties and other issues of common concern, and governments, parliaments and parties from both sides should further improve exchanges and cooperation. Second, Hu urged the two countries to increase economic and trade cooperation for the benefits of both sides. China would further implement measures to boost imports from Maldives and encourage competent enterprises to invest in Maldives, he said. Third, he also expressed his hope that the two countries would complement each other's advantages, expand people-to-people exchanges and explore new ways of cooperation. China would further encourage citizens to visit Maldives, advance China-Maldives cooperation in tourism and help more students from Maldives to study in China, Hu said. Fourth, Hu also called for more efforts from both sides to increase communication and coordination in international and regional affairs.

On the issue of climate change, Hu said China attaches great importance to the issue and fully understands the special concern of small island states, such as Maldives. China is willing to enhance dialogue and cooperation with Maldives to safeguard the common interests of developing countries, Hu said.

Nasheed said China-Maldives ties enjoy a long history and both peoples have maintained close exchanges. He thanked China for helping Maldives in economic and social development and said Maldives attaches great importance to developing bilateral relations and is willing to promote cooperation with China in the sectors of fishing and tourism. He also said Maldives highly appreciates China's efforts in pushing forward international cooperation to address climate change and hopes to strengthen coordination and consultation with China.

Prior to the talks, President Hu held a welcome ceremony for Nasheed at the Shanghai International Convention Center.

Wang Huning, member of the Secretariat of the CPC Central Committee and director of the Policy Research Office of the CPC Central Committee, State Councilor Dai Bingguo and other officials attended the welcome ceremony.

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