Chinese President meets Irish parliament leaders
2013-05-18 00:50

Chinese President Xi Jinping met with Irish parliamentary leaders Seán Barrett and Paddy Burke in Beijing on Friday, calling on the two sides to cement exchange and cooperation.


Mr. Seán Barrett, T.D., Ceann Comhairle of Dáil Éireann (lower house and principal chamber of the Oireachtas, Irish parliament), and Mr. Paddy Burke, Cathaoirleach of Seanad Éireann (upper house of the Oireachtas), are on a week-long visit to China as guests of Mr. Zhang Dejiang, Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPC), the country's top legislature.


Xi recalled his visit to Ireland in February last year, noting that the two nations share common aspirations for promoting the national development and well-being of their people.


The relationship between the two nations, especially since the establishment of the China-Ireland Strategic Partnership for Mutually Beneficial Cooperation last year, has set an example for countries to coexist despite their different cultures and political systems, Xi said.


The Chinese president vowed that China would make concerted efforts with the Irish side to boost exchanges and cooperation between governments as well as parliaments to enhance political mutual trust and step up the bilateral pragmatic cooperation to a higher level in an aim to bring more concrete benefits to the people of both nations.


Xi also briefed the Irish parliament leaders on the latest developments of China, attributing the progress the country has achieved to the socialist road with Chinese characteristics.


"We will adhere to such a development path," Xi told Barrett and Burke, adding that the growth of China has offered a huge market and opportunities to the nations of the world, including Ireland, contributing to the promotion of world peace, stability and prosperity.


Barrett and Burke expressed their admiration of China's achievements since the country adopted the opening-up policy in 1978, noting that the Irish side looks forward to boosting exchanges and cooperation with China in various fields. They also said that they hope to enhance mutual understanding and friendship between the two peoples and work together with China to push forward bilateral relations.


Wang Chen, Vice Chairman and Secretary-General of the NPC Standing Committee participated in this meeting.