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Statement following visit of Chinese Vice Premier

John Key
2 November, 2009
Joint Press Statement following visit of Chinese Vice Premier Li Keqian

Prime Minister John Key, Deputy Prime Minister Bill English and New Zealand ministers welcomed Vice Premier Li Keqiang for discussions on the economy, trade, climate change and international affairs today.

"High level visits are very important to progressing the relationship between our two countries. We had very positive discussions across a range of interest of importance to both countries", the Prime Minister said.

"We are particularly pleased with Vice Premier Li's commitment that China both supported and welcomed New Zealand's initiative to develop a global alliance of research to address emissions arising from agriculture."

"There is great potential benefit to both New Zealand and China as significant agricultural countries in developing technology that can improve agricultural productivity and reduce emissions. We look forward to our scientists, officials and companies working together to address these problems."

"I was also delighted that Li Keqiang welcomed New Zealand's candidacy for a non-permanent seat on the UN Security Council."

Both points show the strong mutual political trust that has developed between China and New Zealand.

New Zealand exports to China rose 58% during the year to August 2009, while imports from China were up 10%, marking a very successful first year of the New Zealand-China Free Trade Agreement.

It was agreed that mutual respect and accommodation of each other's core interests and major concerns, provided a strong political foundation for smooth and stable development of the New Zealand-China bilateral relationship.

ENDS

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