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Li Keqiang Holds Talks with Prime Minister Abdulla Nigmatovich Aripov of Uzbekistan

On the afternoon of November 1, 2019 local time, Premier Li Keqiang held talks with Prime Minister Abdulla Nigmatovich Aripov of Uzbekistan in Tashkent.

Li Keqiang said, China and Uzbekistan are friendly neighbors. Since the two countries established diplomatic relations, the bilateral relations have maintained sound and stable development over a long period with political mutual trust being consolidated and practical cooperation being deepened. The two heads of state have met many times to plan the development of bilateral relations. China is pleased to see that despite the downturn in international trade and investment, bilateral trade has grown against the trend. The Chinese side supports the Uzbek side in choosing development path based on its own national conditions and in promoting reform and opening-up. The Chinese side is willing to exchange development experience with the Uzbek side to enrich China-Uzbekistan comprehensive strategic partnership.

Li Keqiang emphasized, China and Uzbekistan should seize the opportunity to enhance two-way opening-up and forge a new pattern of practical cooperation. The Chinese side is ready to push forward bilateral cooperation in all fields in line with market and commercial principles. The Chinese side encourages its enterprises to invest in Uzbekistan and is willing to import more Uzbek high-quality agricultural products that meet the needs of Chinese consumers. China is willing to push the bilateral trade volume to a new level and expand cooperation in such fields as infrastructure, connectivity, and energy resources. It is expected that the two countries will open more direct flights and intensify cooperation in people-to-people and cultural exchanges such as tourism and culture to further consolidate the public foundation for the friendship between the two countries.

Li Keqiang pointed out, the Chinese side appreciates the Uzbek side's efforts to upgrade the level of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization cooperation, supports the Uzbek side in holding the Meeting of the Council of Heads of Government of the Member States of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization in Tashkent and stands ready to work with all parties to ensure the success of the meeting so as to contribute to peace, stability and prosperity of the region and the world at large.

Abdulla Nigmatovich Aripov said, the Uzbek side attaches great importance to developing relations with China, and the close contacts between the two countries' leaders have injected important impetus into the development of bilateral relations. China is Uzbekistan's largest trade partner. The two countries have carried out high-level and all-round cooperation, and the bilateral trade volume has grown rapidly since the beginning of this year. The Uzbek side is willing to continue to expand the scale of bilateral trade and welcomes Chinese enterprises' investment in Uzbekistan. The Uzbek side hopes to export more agricultural products to China, increase direct flights between the two countries and constantly consolidate the traditional friendship and comprehensive strategic partnership between Uzbekistan and China.

After the talks, Li Keqiang and Abdulla Nigmatovich Aripov witnessed the signing of a series of cooperation agreements in such areas as economy and trade, investment, technology and customs.

State Councilor and Secretary-General of the State Council Xiao Jie and others were present at the above events.

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