BEIJING, Nov. 2 (Xinhua) -- French President Francois Hollande is to visit China on Nov. 2-3. His visit has attracted much attention as the latest example of intensified leadership interaction between China and Europe.
The French president's visit follows Chinese President Xi Jinping's tour to the UK and German Chancellor Angela Merkel's various meetings with the Chinese leadership in less than two weeks, observed David Gosset, founder of the Euro-China Forum.
"All this creates a new momentum to take the EU-China relations at another level," said Gosset.
HIGHLY WATCHED VISIT
Recent years have seen important visit exchanges between China and France. President Xi visited France as part of his Europe tour in March last year, when Xi and Hollande announced a decision to elevate bilateral relations to a close and lasting comprehensive strategic partnership.
Leading a large business delegation, French Prime Minister Manuel Valls paid an official visit to China in early 2015, seeking to expand new areas of cooperation in such sectors as tourism and food processing.
During Chinese Premier Li Keqiang's visit to France in June this year, the two countries agreed to jointly cooperate in third-party markets in the areas of infrastructure, nuclear energy, aviation, agriculture, health and climate change.
"The visit of the French president has to be put into a larger perspective, it is about economy and business but more importantly it is about global politics," said Gosset when talking about Hollande's stay in China on Monday and Tuesday.
At the end of the month, Paris will welcome a crucial meeting for the future of the planet. "France and China are working together so that the international community can reach an agreement on climate change," said Gosset.
He said this is of the highest importance simply since there is no planet B.
China won international fame for its multiple climate pledges. These include a decision to launch a national carbon cap-and-trade system in 2017 to help contain emissions, and establish a 20-billion-yuan (3.1-billion-U.S.-dollar) fund to help other developing countries combat and adapt to climate change.
In the same month, the French president comes to Beijing while the Chinese president goes to Paris, united by the same sense of global responsibilities, said Gosset.
DYNAMIC CHINA-EUROPE RELATIONS
China has become a keyword in recent European diplomacy, as a consensus on expanding pragmatic cooperation with China has been reached among many politicians there, analysts said.
Likewise, China has consistently valued the European Union, not only in terms of a bilateral relationship, but also for its potential to contribute to global stability and economic growth, said Keith Bennett, a veteran China watcher and deputy chairman of the 48 Group Club, an independent business network committed to promoting relations between Britain and China
Britain last month rolled out the red carpet for Xi, the first Chinese head of state to have visited the country in a decade.
During what was dubbed as a "super state visit," Xi witnessed the signing of deals worth about 40 billion pounds (61.5 billion dollars).
Bennett was looking forward to a Free Trade Agreement between China and the EU, which he said will not only have a bilateral impact, but will also immeasurably strengthen the "One Belt, One Road" initiative, fortifying its eastern and western flanks respectively.
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