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Premier highly affirms ASEAN as China’s largest trade partner

Updated: Nov 12,2020 09:18 PM

Premier Li Keqiang attended the 23rd China-ASEAN (10+1) leaders' meeting via video link on Nov 12.

China-ASEAN ties have become increasingly stable and mature through thick and thin over the past 30 years, the Premier said.

Challenged by the unpredicted COVID-19 outbreak, China and ASEAN have stepped up cooperation and experience sharing, Premier Li said, adding that the two sides pioneered in launching shortcut passages and green passages to promote restorative economic growth.

Against the backdrop of a global trade sag, economic recession, and hold-up in personnel exchanges, China-ASEAN trade bucked the downward trend and attained further growth in the first three quarters with over 70 percent year-on-year growth of China's outbound investment to ASEAN. ASEAN has risen to become China's largest trade partner, the Premier said.

With the following joint efforts, the China-ASEAN cooperation maintains great momentum and plays an important role in upholding peace, stability and prosperity in the region, the Premier noted.

The two sides adhere to a path of unity and development with good neighborly and friendly relations. China and ASEAN countries have supported each other to tide over difficult times, such as two financial crises, major natural disasters, including SARS and tsunami, as well as the COVID-19 outbreak this year, the Premier said.

The two sides stick to win-win results and have embarked on a path of mutual development. China-ASEAN cooperation is based on mutual benefit, openness and inclusiveness, Premier Li said, adding that the two sides have regarded each other’s development as an important opportunity, communicating on development plans, strengthening connectivity and advocating multilateralism and free trade. It has not only boosted their own development, but also injected great impetus into regional and global economic recovery and development.

The two sides uphold peaceful development through dialogue and consultation. Peace and stability is the premise of development and prosperity. China and ASEAN both agree to respect each other and seek common ground while reserving differences. They have been resolving disputes through friendly negotiations to build a peaceful and stable environment in the region.