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Premier arrives in Uzbekistan for SCO meeting, official visit

Updated: Nov 01,2019 20:31

At the invitation of Uzbek Prime Minister Abdulla Aripov, Premier Li Keqiang arrived in Tashkent on Nov 1 for the 18th meeting of the Council of Heads of Government (Prime Ministers) of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) and an official visit to Uzbekistan.

Aripov and senior Uzbek government officials welcomed Premier Li at the Tashkent Airport. Young people dressed in Uzbek folk costume were waiting at the airport and offered the Premier fresh flowers.

Premier Li received a grand welcome ceremony held by Aripov. The military band played the national anthems of the two countries. Premier Li, accompanied by Aripov, inspected the guard of honor.

Uzbekistan is China’s close friendly neighbor, Premier Li said. Over the years, the China-Uzbekistan relationship has been experiencing a golden era of rapid development under the strategic guidance of the heads of the two countries.

“This is my first official visit to Uzbekistan as Chinese premier of the State Council," the Premier said. "I am looking forward to having in-depth exchanges of views with Uzbek state leaders on deepening bilateral relations and practical cooperation in various fields, and pushing the China-Uzbekistan comprehensive strategic partnership to a higher level, in order to better benefit the two peoples.”

Facing the complicated international situation, he said, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization is playing an increasingly prominent role in safeguarding regional security and stability, and in promoting prosperity of member states.

"I expect to have deep exchanges with all sides on the implementation of the consensus reached at the Bishkek summit in June, and the promotion of SCO development and multilateral cooperation," he added.

The Premier also said he believes that all parties involved will use the meeting as an opportunity to further the "Shanghai Spirit", enhance friendship and win-win cooperation, expand mutual opening up, and facilitate trade and investment, bringing more benefits to the people of member states.

During his official visit to Uzbekistan, Premier Li will meet with Uzbek President Shavkat Mirziyoyev as well as the prime minister.

At the meeting of the Council of Heads of Government (Prime Ministers) of SCO, Premier Li and other leaders of member states will map out plans for future pragmatic cooperation, and sign cooperation documents.

In addition, the Premier will also hold bilateral meetings with those leaders.
State Councilor and Secretary-General of the State Council Xiao Jie arrived with the Premier.