|Xi Jinping Speaks with French President Emmanuel Macron on the Phone|
On the evening of February 25, 2021, President Xi Jinping had a phone conversation with French President Emmanuel Macron.
The two heads of state exchanged Spring Festival greetings and respectively sent best wishes to the people of the two countries.
Xi Jinping pointed out that we had five phone conversations in 2020, which have promoted the sound development of China-France relations, and the consensuses we reached have been well implemented. In the new year, the two sides should continue to make joint efforts in the spirit of the pioneering ox and strive for greater development of bilateral relations. The two countries should cement mutual trust, respect and accommodate in earnest each other's core interests and major concerns, effectively implement major cooperation agreements, actively push for continuous progress in such areas of practical cooperation as energy, aviation and agricultural and food products, and foster new driving forces for bilateral cooperation. China supports building Paris into an international financial center.
Xi Jinping stressed Macron's strong call for strategic independence of the European Union (EU), saying China believes a stronger Europe is conducive to the peace, stability and development of a multipolar world, and to boosting cooperation between the two major forces of China and the EU to jointly tackle various global challenges. The two sides should work together to make good preparations for the series of important political events between China and the EU in the next stage. At the end of last year, China and the EU jointly announced the completion of China-EU investment agreement negotiations. We need to work together to put the agreement into effect at an early date. Cooperation between China and Central and Eastern European countries is part of the overall China-Europe cooperation. China is ready to work with France to actively explore tripartite cooperation in Central and Eastern Europe, so as to open up new space for China-EU cooperation.
Xi Jinping pointed out that as permanent members of the UN Security Council and responsible major countries, China and France should continue to champion multilateralism, and inspire global efforts to uphold equity and justice, coordination and cooperation, as well as openness and inclusiveness, so as to make due contributions to achieving an early victory in humanity's fight against COVID-19 and promoting world peace and development. China has offered COVID-19 vaccine aid to more than 50 developing countries, and stands ready to work with France to support the World Health Organization's role in international cooperation against the pandemic, and actively participate in the Access to COVID-19 Tools (ACT) Accelerator initiative and the COVID-19 Vaccines Global Access Facility (COVAX). China has been fully implementing the G20 Debt Service Suspension Initiative, pushing for an agreement by all relevant parties on the initiative's extension, and urging multilateral financial institutions and commercial creditors to take part. China is glad to see France and other members of the international community increasing their involvement in Africa, and is willing to maintain communication with France. We need to encourage more countries to carry out the Paris Agreement on dealing with climate change, and support each other in hosting the 15th meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity and the 7th World Conservation Congress.
Macron said, I applaud the development of France-China relations and am willing to work with the Chinese side in an open and cooperative manner to strive for more progress in bilateral cooperation in important areas and actively promote exchanges and cooperation between the EU and China. Macron hopes that the EU and China will make joint efforts for an early entry into force of the EU-China investment agreement. France appreciates China's positive contribution to international cooperation against the pandemic, especially in helping other countries obtain vaccines in a faster pace. He hopes to strengthen cooperation with China in this regard. France is ready to strengthen communication with China in international affairs, and looks forward to working with China to encourage the international community to roll out debt relief and suspension for Africa and help the continent achieve economic growth. France also stands ready to continue its close cooperation with China in tackling global challenges such as climate change and public health. France supports China in hosting the 15th meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity.
The two heads of state also exchanged views on regional hotspot issues of common concern.