Chinese President Hu Jintao (right) and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper pose for a photo in Haiwaii, Nov 12, 2011. [Photo/Xinhua]
HONOLULU - Chinese President Hu Jintao met with Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper here Saturday afternoon, and the two sides reached consensus on continuously pushing the China-Canada strategic partnership to new heights.
Hu and Harper met on the sidelines of the 19th Economic Leaders` Meeting of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum.
Hu said in the meeting that in recent years, China-Canada relations have shown steady growth as the two countries have maintained close high-level contacts and communication at various levels.
Hu recalled his state visit to Canada in June 2010, during which the two sides pledged to promote their strategic partnership and signed a host of cooperation agreements.
Hu noted that the two countries have achieved remarkable results in trade and economic cooperation and made positive progress in exchanges and cooperation in the areas of energy resources, science, technology, environmental protection, tourism, education and law enforcement.
He further said the two countries have continuously strengthened communication and coordination on regional and international affairs.
Hu pointed out that China attaches great importance to developing its relations with Canada. He expressed appreciation for Prime Minister Harper and Canada`s new government for their can-do attitude on expanding relations with China.
Hu said China is ready to work with Canada to enhance mutual trust, expand cooperation, increase common ground and deepen friendship so as to turn the potential of bilateral cooperation into real achievements and continuously promote bilateral ties.
Hu put forward a five-point proposal on expanding the bilateral relationship.
Firstly, he said the two countries should adopt a strategic perception and firmly stick to the correct direction in developing bilateral relationship. He said the two countries should respect and treat each other as equals, properly handle each other`s core interest and major concerns and ensure a stable and healthy development of bilateral ties.
Secondly, Hu said the two countries should maintain high-level contact and dialogue at various levels and should continuously enhance consensus and trust through contact and communication.
Thirdly, Hu said the two countries should further strengthen pragmatic cooperation in trade, investment, energy resources, science, technology, environment protection, health, finance and infrastructure development.
Fourthly, Hu said the two countries should promote friendship between their peoples and expand cultural exchanges so as to improve mutual understanding and consolidate the basis of public opinion for developing bilateral relations.
Fifthly, the two sides should expand cooperation in multilateral arena by increasing dialogue and consultation on major regional and international issues so as to jointly maintain peace, stability and prosperity of the Asia-Pacific region and the world at large.
Harper, for his part, fully agreed with Hu`s proposal and said that Canada attaches importance to developing its strategic partnership with China.
In recent years, Harper said, the two countries have enjoyed fruitful high-level contacts. Bilateral trade has been growing fast and showing great potential.
He said Canada is ready to work with China to further tap this potential and broaden cooperation.
Harper also said the two sides should deepen their strategic and economic partnership and expand cooperation by accelerating joint study on the complementarity of the two economies, sealing an agreement on protection of investment as soon as possible and expanding cooperation in energy.
He said the two countries should also promote educational and cultural exchanges, step up consultation in the multilateral arena, and join hands to fight protectionism.
During President Hu`s visit to Canada in June last year,leaders of the two countries agreed to strive to boost the volume of two-way trade to 60 billion U.S. dollars in 2015.
At present, China is an important trading partner of Canada. In 2010, bilateral trade increased by 24 percent to 37 billion dollars.
In the first nine months of this year, trade between China and Canada amounted to 34 billion dollars, up 28 percent over the same period of last year.