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Premier Li Vows Further Cooperation with Kyrgyzstan

Premier Li Keqiang called for enhanced cooperation with Kyrgyzstan in areas including the economy, infrastructure and international organization.

Li's pledge came during talks with Kyrgyz Prime Minister Sooronbai Zheenbekov in northern China's port city of Tianjin on the sidelines of the Annual Meeting of the New Champions 2016, also known as the Summer Davos Forum.

Stressing that China and Kyrgyzstan have highly complementary economies, Li said bilateral cooperation has great potential and broad prospects.

He called on both sides to increase cooperation and optimize trade structure.

"China is willing to enhance production capacity and investment cooperation with Kyrgyzstan," Li told Zheenbekov.

He encouraged the two countries to push forward infrastructure construction projects such as the China-Kyrgyzstan-Uzbekistan railway project, urban road networks in Bishkek, and the China-Central Asia natural gas pipeline D Line, and expand advanced agricultural cooperation and personnel exchanges.

The two countries should also deepen law-enforcement and security cooperation and people-to-people exchanges in fields such as tourism, education, Chinese language, archaeology and youth exchanges to enhance mutual understanding and cement traditional friendship, Li said.

Hailing the sound development of bilateral ties, Li called China and Kyrgyzstan "good neighbors and strategic partners."

The Chinese and Kyrgyz presidents met on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) summit in the Uzbek capital Tashkent last week.

China firmly supports Kyrgyzstan in choosing its own development path, said Li, adding that China is willing to work with Kyrgyzstan to forge ahead bilateral cooperation and jointly safeguard regional peace and stability.

As Kyrgyzstan will host the 15th SCO prime ministers' meeting later this year, Li said China will work with Kyrgyzstan within the framework of the SCO and push forward the synergy of China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative with the development strategies of SCO members.

Zheenbekov, for his part, spoke highly of this year's Summer Davos Forum, saying China has shown itself to be a "bellwether" in world economic recovery and development.

Calling China "a strategic partner and top priority of Kyrgyzstan's foreign policy," Zheenbekov said his country is ready to enhance production capacity cooperation and implement large projects to lift bilateral cooperation to a new height.

He spoke of Li's attendance to the SCO prime ministers' meeting and an official visit to Kyrgyzstan.

At the beginning of the talks, Li extended sympathies for a 6.7-magnitude earthquake in Kyrgyzstan on the night of June 26, saying China is ready to provide assistance should there be any need.

Zheenbekov expressed his appreciation for this and voiced condolences for those affected by the tornado and hailstorm in eastern China's Jiangsu Province last week.

(Xinhua News Agency June 27, 2016)

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