GUANGZHOU, Feb. 3 (Xinhua) -- Premier Wen Jiabao said Friday afternoon that trade volume between China and Germany will "hopefully" exceed 200 billion U.S. dollars this year.
Wen made the remarks while talking with visiting German Chancellor Angela Merkel and businessmen from both countries in Guangzhou, capital of south China's Guangdong province.
Trade volume between China and Germany amounted to 169.1 billion U.S. dollars in 2011, Wen said.
It is important for economic and trade relations between the two sides to be totally equal and mutually beneficial in light of the gloomy global economy, Wen said, adding that new opportunities exist for Sino-German cooperation.
He called on both sides to further expand two-way investment and boost cooperation in the areas of technology, energy conservation and environmental protection by holding a more open attitude and combining respective advantages.
Wen said China will strive to create an open, transparent, efficient, and equal marketing environment and welcome German enterprises to expand investment in China.
Wen said the two sides should further establish and perfect economic and trade cooperation mechanisms, formulate a long-term cooperation plan, strengthen the protection of intellectual property rights (IPR) and boost economic and trade relations to a higher level.
Merkel said Germany has the desire to further expand investment in China and welcomes Chinese enterprises to invest in Germany.
Merkel also expressed her hope that both sides can explore new fields for cooperation and boost bilateral economic cooperation.
Businessmen from the two countries introduced some of the cooperative achievements they have made and gave suggestions for promoting bilateral economic and trade relations.
They said China and Germany have maintained a broad cooperative perspective in economics and trade by holding common interests. The two countries can not only explore mutual markets, but also work together to explore global markets.
Merkel arrived in Beijing on Thursday, starting a three-day official visit to China. The trip marks her fifth visit to China since being elected chancellor.