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China, EU pledge to cement people-to-people exchanges

BRUSSELS, (Xinhua) — The third meeting of the China-EU high-level people-to-people dialogue was held here Tuesday, during which leaders representing both parties vowed to boost cultural exchanges.

The meeting was co-chaired by visiting Chinese Vice Premier Liu Yandong and EU Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport Tibor Navracsics.

Liu said that since the dialogue mechanism had been set up three years ago, China and the EU had seen great progress in people-to-people exchanges, which had become one of the three pillars for the development of bilateral ties together with political mutual trust and economic cooperation.

The two sides should enjoy mutual respect and trust, while treating each other as a force in maintaining peace and development. Moreover, China and the EU should learn from each other and try to realize common prosperity, Liu said.

China expects to enhance cooperation with the EU in areas of education, science and technology, culture, media, youth, women and tourism cooperation, she said, noting that China will make efforts to gather more popular support and wisdom so as to make the people-to-people ties more resilient and robust and inject new vdigor into bilateral ties.

For his part, Navracsics said that the spirit of harmony in diversity, which was pursued during the process of bilateral people-to-people exchanges, will facilitate bilateral mutual understanding and trust.

The EU is ready to enhance bilateral cultural and people-to-people cooperation in the spirit of openness and mutual respect, he said.

The two leaders signed a joint statement of the dialogue after their meeting, and attended the opening ceremony of the Confucius classes project in Brussels’ European schools, as well as the award ceremony of the “China Unlimited” competition.

Earlier Tuesday, Liu also met with European Commission Vice President Kristalina Georgieva.

Liu arrived in Brussels Monday for a multi-day tour of Europe. She will leave for Britain Wednesday to co-chair the third meeting of the China-Britain high-level cultural exchange mechanism with British Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt.

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