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Clark: NZ glad to promote FTA agreement with China

Peoples Daily Online, China

Clark: NZ glad to promote FTA agreement with China

27 March 2007

Xinhua. New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark said Tuesday New Zealand is willing to promote a free trade agreement with China as early as possible.

Clark told visiting Chinese Vice-Premier Zeng Peiyan that the two countries share mutual interests in many areas, and New Zealand is glad to upgrade understanding and cooperation with China in various industries as well as social and cultural areas.

Clark said she expected the two sides beef up consultation and coordination in maintaining peace and stability of the South Pacific region.

The prime minister reiterated her country’s One China policy.

Zeng conveyed cordial greetings from Chinese President Hu Jintao and Premier Wen Jiabao to Miss Clark, and praised the development of the bilateral relations, mentioning frequent exchanges at various levels.

He said China will continue to develop relations with New Zealand from strategic perspective, and is willing to expand cooperation in agriculture and dairy industry, as well as in fields such as science, education, tourism and culture.

Zeng said this year as the 35th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries is an opportunity for the two sides to enhance mutual confidence and expand common views, consider mutual concerns and improve cooperative mechanism, and work together to broadly push forward mutual beneficial relationship for the 21st century.

Zeng also met with New Zealand Opposition leader John Key Tuesday morning.

Zeng’s three-day visit to New Zealand started in Hamilton on Sunday. He held talks there with local leaders and made speech on trade and investment opportunities between the two countries.

New Zealand is the second leg of Zeng’s four-country visit to South Pacific, which will also take him to New Zealand, Vanuatu and Papua New Guinea.