SEOUL, April 6 (Xinhua) -- Li Changchun, a senior official of the Communist Party of China (CPC), said here Monday that the strategic and cooperative partnership between China and the Republic of Korea (ROK) has witnessed rapid growth thanks to concerted efforts made by both.
Li, a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee, made the remarks when meeting ROK President Lee Myung Bak.
Li first congratulated the successful meeting between Lee and Chinese President Hu Jintao amidst the G20 financial summit in London. Lee, in return, highly spoke of the contribution made by China to the results scored in the summit.
Hu-Lee summit is the latest demonstration of high-level exchanges between China and ROK. The two countries, key economic partners to the other, also carry out cooperation in cultural, educational and scientific areas.
"We also strengthen communication and coordination on major global and regional issues, including China-Japan-ROK cooperation, climate change and international financial cooperation, thus ushering the China-ROK strategic and cooperative partnership in a new phase," Li said.
"The development of relations with ROK takes an important position in China's foreign policy for neighboring countries," he added.
To further develop such ties, Li suggested both nations maintain high-level exchanges for increasing mutual trust in political area. "Besides governmental contacts, the exchanges between parliaments and political parties should also be strengthened. And the exchanges among political parties should form a mechanism," he said.
Li also proposed to make joint efforts for combating the spreading financial crisis and strengthening mutually beneficial cooperation. "We should adopt effective measures to ensure the steady growth of economic cooperation, increase cooperation in such key areas as energy, telecommunication, finance, logistic and environmental protection, and initiated negotiations of free-trade agreement at an early date," he said.
He also pledged to expand people-to-people contacts, in particular the communication among young people, so as to lay a solid foundation for bilateral ties. "Exchanges of academic and media circles could also be enhanced," he said.
On multi-lateral cooperation, Li suggested both keep close communication and coordination in preventing trade protectionism, reforming international financial system and strengthening global and regional cooperation on financial affairs.
Li expressed appreciation for ROK's adherence to one-China policy.
Lee said he has visited China three times after he assumed the presidency. "The moves fully demonstrate my firm belief for developing ROK-China relations and the strong aspiration of the our people to develop China-ROK friendship for generations to come," he said.
He said that ROK considered China's development as its own opportunity and welcomed China's active and important role in regional and international affairs.
ROK supports China's measures to combat the financial crisis and is willing to earnestly implement the consensus reached by leaders of the two countries, Lee said.
ROK agreed to coordinate with China on macro-economic policy, he said.
ROK is the last leg of Li's four-nation tour which has already taken him to Australia, Myanmar and Japan.