Xi’s Switzerland visit to advance China-EU cooperation



Chinese President Xi Jinping’s upcoming visit to Switzerland and his scheduled attendance at the 47th World Economic Forum (WEF) are expected to deepen China-Switzerland partnership, advance China-Europe cooperation as a whole, and reduce uncertainties through injecting confidence and solidarity into the international business community.
Xi, as a leader of a responsible power, will share Chinese governance wisdom and the concept of peaceful development and win-win cooperation, and explore ways of boosting world economic confidence and faciliate global governance reform.
The Chinese president will pay the state visit on Jan. 15-18 to Switzerland, a European country that has maintained traditional friendship with China over the past six decades since the two established the diplomatic relations in 1950.
The highlight of China-Switzerland ties is innovation and creativity. The two countries established a strategic innovative partnership during then-President Johann Schneider-Ammann’s state visit to China in 2016.
Switzerland has become China’s first and the only strategic partnership named after “innovation,” one of the five development concepts outlined in China’s 13th Five-Year Plan period (2016-2020), which also include coordination, green development, opening up and sharing.
Wang Yiwei, a professor at Renmin University of China in Beijing, said the word of innovation has precisely defined the direction for the future development of the relations between China and developed countries.
“The practice that Switzerland is taking the opportunity of China’s pursuit of building a new type of major-country relationship has demonstrated an example for other Western countries,” he said.
Currently, China-Switzerland relationship is gaining a good momentum. More than 20 governmental dialogue and consultation systems function well, and bilateral trade volume has increased against the sluggishness and gloominess in the global economy with many achievements in economic and trade cooperation.
In 2016, China Construction Bank, a leading Chinese state-owned lender, set up its branch in Zurich, Switzerland, marking the official launch of the RMB clearing business in the world’s largest offshore financial center.
The bilateral relationship has always taken its place in the front ranks of China-European countries.
Switzerland was among the first European countries to recognize China’s market economy status, the first Western countries to establish diplomatic relationship with the People’s Republic of China, the first European continental countries to ink a free trade agreement with China, and one of the first countries to set up industrial joint ventures in China and apply for a membership of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, a China-initiated multilateral bank. Against the backdrop of changing global landscape, weak economic recovery and the rise of de-globalization ideology, the WEF set the theme of its 2017 annual meeting as “Responsive and Responsible Leadership.—Xinhua

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