China, Poland urged to seize opportunity of Belt & Road Initiative for closer cooperation

China and Poland should seize the new opportunities arising from the Belt and Road Initiative and "China-CEE 16+1 mechanism" to deepen mutually-beneficial cooperation, China's top legislator Zhang Dejiang has said.

Zhang, Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPC), paid an official friendly visit to Poland between July 12 and July 16, during which he met with Polish President Andrzej Duda, Prime Minister Beata Szydlo and parliamentary leaders.

During his meeting with Duda, Zhang said that traditional friendship between the two peoples is consolidated. In the past two years, Chinese President Xi Jinping and Duda exchanged visits and the two nations work to build a comprehensive strategic partnership, which opens a new chapter in the Sino-Polish relations, Zhang said.

China, Zhang said, attaches great importance to developing relations with Poland and regards Poland as an important cooperation partner in the Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) and the European Union (EU).

The two sides should seize the new opportunities generated by the Belt and Road Initiative and "China-CEE 16+1 mechanism", so as to deepen mutually beneficial cooperation in the areas of economy, trade and investment, and to forge ahead with bilateral relations, Zhang said.

Duda praised China's development, saying that his country looks forward to deepening cooperation through construction of Belt and Road Initiative projects, strengthening communication and coordination on international issues, safeguarding common interests and continuously enriching the comprehensive strategic partnership between the two countries.

The Belt and Road Initiative, proposed by China in 2013, refers to the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road. It aims to build a trade and infrastructure network connecting Asia with Europe and Africa along the ancient trade routes.

The 16+1 mechanism is a platform created in April 2012 by China and 16 Central and Eastern European (CEE) countries.

In his meeting with Prime Minister Beata Szydlo, Zhang mentioned Szydlo's attendance to the Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation in Beijing in May, during which leaders of the two countries reached a series of new important consensuses on strengthening China-Poland relations.

Both nations, Zhang said, could make use of existing mechanisms and platforms to deepen infrastructure cooperation, improve service of the China-Europe freight trains and expand new areas of cooperation.

Zhang also said China attaches importance to developing relations with the EU and is willing to work with the EU countries, including Poland, to continually promote the relations between China and the EU.

For her part, Szydlo said the Belt and Road Initiative proposed by President Xi is of great significance to a more balanced and sustainable development of global economy.

Poland is implementing a new development strategy, and would welcome China's participation in Poland's infrastructure construction and closer cooperation in small- and medium-sized enterprises, she said.

During his stay in Warsaw, Zhang also held talks respectively with his Polish counterparts, Stanislaw Karczewski, Marshall of Polish Senate and Marek Kuchcinski, Speaker of Poland's Sejm (or Lower House of the Polish Parliament).

Zhang made suggestions on strengthening cooperation between the legislative bodies of the two countries.

He said the legislative bodies should maintain the momentum of friendly exchanges, constantly enhance mutual trust and understanding, and support each other's core interests.

Zhang also called for reinforcing exchanges of experience between the two countries in the area of legislation and supervision, and promoting friendly exchanges in culture, education and tourism.

Karczewski and Kuchcinski agreed that strengthening exchanges and cooperation between the legislative bodies is of great significance to the development of two-way ties.

Polish Senate and Sejm have supported the government to strengthen cooperation with China and are willing to make more efforts in this end.

Zhang and Kuchcinski signed a memorandum of understanding on cooperation between the China's NPC and the Polish Sejm.

Source: Xinhua