Chinese President Xi Jinping (left) and visiting Kyrgyz President Sooronbay Jeenbekov inspect the guard of honor during a welcome ceremony in Beijing, June 6, 2018. (XINHUA)
BEIJING - China and Kyrgyzstan on Wednesday agreed to establish a comprehensive strategic partnership.
The agreement was reached during the talks between Chinese President Xi Jinping and visiting Kyrgyz President Sooronbay Jeenbekov in Beijing.
Xi said China would like to make joint efforts with Kyrgyzstan to open minds and explore potentials to lift bilateral cooperation to a new level
"It is another landmark event in the history of bilateral ties that China and Kyrgyzstan will establish a comprehensive strategic partnership, which will inject new impetus into the development of bilateral ties," Xi told Jeenbekov.
Standing at a new starting point, China is willing to work with Kyrgyzstan to carry forward the traditional friendship and conduct all-round cooperation so as to achieve national development and better benefit the two peoples, said Xi.
Noting that Kyrgyzstan was one of the first countries to support and participate into the Belt and Road Initiative and related construction, Xi said China would like to make joint efforts with Kyrgyzstan to open minds and explore potentials to lift bilateral cooperation to a new level.
He called on both sides to enhance synergy in development strategies and policy coordination, seek more converging interests and growth points, jointly plan key areas and major projects, expand trade and investment, and speed up construction of major projects.
Chinese President Xi Jinping (right) shakes hands with Kyrgyz President Sooronbay Jeenbekov at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, capital of China, June 6, 2018. (LI XUEREN / XINHUA)
Both countries should expand cultural and people-to-people exchanges and local cooperation to boost neighborly friendship, said Xi, who also stressed the importance of improving security cooperation to fight the "three evil forces" of terrorism, extremism and separatism and organized crime across the border.
Xi spoke highly of Kyrgyzstan's support for China since it has taken the rotating presidency of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) last June, saying that China stands ready to work with Kyrgyzstan to promote the SCO so it can develop along a healthy and stable track.
Jeenbekov, who is in China on a state visit and to attend the SCO Qingdao Summit scheduled to be held this weekend, said Kyrgyzstan admires China's social and economic achievements and appreciates China's long-term valuable assistance.
The establishment of a comprehensive strategic partnership unveils a new chapter in the bilateral relationship, he said.
Jeenbekov said it has always been Kyrgyzstan's priority to develop ties with China and Kyrgyzstan has been and will continue to be a most reliable neighbor, partner, and friend of China.
Kyrgyzstan will firmly adhere to the one-China policy, stand ready to advance pragmatic cooperation with China in the areas of economy and trade, cultural and people-to-people exchanges, and jointly combat "three evil forces," as well as work together in safeguarding regional peace, stability and security, said Jeenbekov.
Kyrgyzstan backs the China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative and believes the initiative will greatly promote common development in the region, said the Kyrgyz president, adding that Kyrgyzstan will maintain the continuity of all cooperative agreements with China.
Jeenbekov said his country is confident that the SCO Qingdao Summit will be a success under the leadership of China.
After the talks, the two presidents signed a joint statement regarding establishing a comprehensive strategic partnership between China and Kyrgyzstan and witnessed the signing of a series of cooperative agreements.
Prior to the talks, Xi held a welcome ceremony for Jeenbekov outside the East Gate of the Great Hall of the People.
According to the Chinese Foreign Ministry, this is the first time the new state visit welcome ceremony has been conducted.