|Chinese Premier Li Keqiang delivers a speech at the Thai parliament in Bangkok, Thailand, Oct. 11, 2013. (Xinhua/Liu Jiansheng)
BANGKOK, Oct. 11 (Xinhua) -- Visiting Chinese Premier Li Keqiang Friday hailed China-Thailand friendship and envisioned a brighter future for the bilateral ties in his speech at the parliament building here, the first time that a Chinese leader addressed the Thai legislature.
Li, who received a standing ovation from Thai lawmakers as he walked into the parliament chamber, said that the friendly exchanges between the two nations can be traced back to ancient times as they are closely linked by geographic, cultural and ethnic ties.
He said that since the two nations established diplomatic ties in 1975, the bilateral relationship has always maintained a healthy development momentum despite changes in international and domestic circumstances, yielding abundant achievements and bringing concrete benefits to the two peoples.
The Chinese premier noted that as East Asia's role becomes more prominent in a profoundly changing global situation, China and Thailand face good opportunities for deepening cooperation.
Li called for the two sides to consolidate their traditional "familial affection" and cement the ages-old amity with newly-forged bond, so as to lift the bilateral comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership to a higher level.
He said the two sides should jointly plan for their future development, not only implementing the agreed-upon projects, but also making strategic planning for their long-term cooperation.
Li proposed to deepen the bilateral pragmatic collaboration in trade, agriculture, transport, water conservancy, energy and education, speed up inter-connectivity construction with railway as the new highlight, boost people-to-people exchange, advance cooperation in cultural, scientific, maritime and environmental areas, so as to elevate the two-way ties to higher levels constantly.
He said in recent years the China-Thailand relationship has exceeded the bilateral level and played a guiding role in the development of China's relations with the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) as a whole.
China is ready to work with Thailand to strengthen coordination on regional and multilateral cooperation, and to keep close communication and collaboration on regional and global issues, Li said.
He believed that the two-way comprehensive and mutually-beneficial cooperation will attain greater achievements.
In their remarks, speaker of the Thai House of Representatives Somsak Kiatsuranont and other parliament leaders hailed Li's visit, saying it opened a new chapter in the bilateral ties and expressing willingness to work with the Chinese side to make bigger progress of the bilateral ties.