|Chinese President Xi Jinping (1st L) and his wife Peng Liyuan (2nd L) welcome Finnish President Sauli Niinisto and his wife ahead of the talks between the two presidents in Sanya, south China's Hainan Province, April 6, 2013. (Xinhua/Wang Ye)
SANYA, April 6 (Xinhua) -- Chinese President Xi Jinping and his Finnish counterpart Sauli Niinisto on Saturday jointly announced the upgrading of the two countries' relations to a future-oriented new-type cooperative partnership.
Xi met with Niinisto in the city of Sanya in south China's Hainan Province. The two leaders exchanged views on China-Finland and China-Europe relations as well as major international and regional issues of common concern.
Over the last 60-plus years since China and Finland established diplomatic relations, the ties between the two countries keep developing in a steady manner despite changes in the international situation, Xi said.
Finland is an advanced and industrialized country, and it is also a recognized innovative country, Xi said, noting that Finland's experiences and advantages in relevant fields may fit in for China's development and there will be great potentials and opportunities in the cooperation between the two countries.
China is willing to work with Finland to build a future-oriented new-type cooperative partnership, and focus on deepening cooperation in the fields of investment, innovation, environment and urbanization, Xi said.
China welcomes more investments from Finnish enterprises, especially those made to the western part of the country, he said.
Moreover, Xi called on the two sides to enrich the exchanges in the cultural sectors and promote communications among the youths of the two countries to pass on the China-Finland friendship to the next generation.
Niinisto said Finland appreciates the collaboration with China and is willing to enhance the cooperation with China in trade, urbanization, sustainable development, poverty alleviation and judiciary fields.
He also invited more Chinese enterprises to invest in Finland.
Moreover, he said Finland backs China's bid to become an observer of the Arctic Council, and is willing to intensify partnership with China in handling relevant affairs in this region.
Niinisto said he is optimistic about the development of the Finland-China relations.
Niinisto further briefed Xi about the latest news regarding the economic development in Europe and the European Union's efforts in coping with the sovereign debt crisis.
"A prosperous and stable Europe is also beneficial to China's interests and China will, as always, support the cause of European integration and the continent's efforts in dealing with the debt issues," Xi said.
China is willing to cooperate with Europe in a practical manner to promote the China-Europe comprehensive strategic partnership, Xi said.
Prior to the meeting, Xi held a welcome ceremony for Niinisto, who is paying a state visit to China and will attend the opening ceremony of the 2013 Boao Forum for Asia Annual Conference on Sunday.