BEIJING, Jan. 15 (Xinhua) -- China vowed Thursday to continue its policies on relations with the European Union (EU) to achieve a stronger, comprehensive strategic partnership.
"The mainstream of China-EU ties is good, and we haven't changed our policy of further promoting a comprehensive strategic partnership," Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu told a regular press briefing.
China-France ties soured after French President Nicolas Sarkozy's meeting with the Dalai Lama early last month, and the annual China-EU summit was also postponed.
On the China-Europe relationship, Jiang said it was essentially developing steadily.
Jiang said China and the EU were important trade partners.
"The EU has been China's biggest trade partner for five consecutive years," Jiang said.
China and the EU maintained good lines of communication and consultation on crucial international and regional issues.
Thanks to many years of mutual effort, China and the EU have developed a mutually beneficial cooperation in many fields and at all levels, she said.
Tomas Pojar, the first vice foreign minister of the Czech Republic, which holds the EU presidency, is scheduled to arrive in Beijing next Monday for the fourth China-EU strategic dialogue.
Jiang said the two sides would exchange views on China-EU relations and other international and regional issues of common concern.
"We expect the dialogue to enhance mutual trust, expand common ground and deepen cooperation in a bid for the long-term, sound, stable progress of China-EU ties," Jiang said.