Published: 12:00, March 10, 2023 | Updated: 12:00, March 10, 2023
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Xi, Spanish king mark 50th anniversary of ties
By Cao Desheng

President Xi Jinping and King of Spain Felipe VI exchanged congratulations on Thursday on the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between the two countries, with both leaders pledging to promoting bilateral exchanges and cooperation.

In a congratulatory message sent to the king of Spain, Xi said that over the past half-century, the two countries have established and developed a comprehensive strategic partnership in the spirit of mutual respect, equality and mutual benefit, delivering tangible benefits to the people of the two countries.

Xi said in the message that he is willing to work with King Felipe VI to take the 50th anniversary as a new starting point to consolidate political mutual trust, expand cooperation and enhance people-to-people exchanges in order to jointly write a new chapter of China-Spain friendly ties.

Felipe VI said in his message that over the past 50 years, relations between Spain and China have been developing steadily and smoothly, with bilateral cooperation in various fields advancing continuously and friendship between the two peoples ever deepening.

The king said that he is confident the two countries will take the opportunity of celebrating the 50th anniversary of diplomatic ties to comprehensively expand friendly exchanges and pragmatic cooperation, and join hands to tackle global challenges such as climate change.

China and Spain enjoy sound political and economic relations. Spain is China's sixth-largest trading partner in the European Union, and China is Spain's largest trading partner outside the EU. Bilateral trade reached around $51.5 billion in 2022, up 6.5 percent year-on-year.