President Jiang Zemin held talks with the President of the Republic of Congo (20/03/2000)
2004-05-20 13:28

    President Jiang Zemin held talks with the President of the Republic of Congo on the afternoon of March 20. The two sides exchanged views on bilateral relations and issues of common concern.

President Jiang Zemin first extended welcome to President Sassau for his current visit to China. Jiang remarked that His Excellency has visited China many times and is an old friend of the Chinese people. Jiang was delighted to meet the President in Beijing 13 years after his visit to Shanghai in April 1987 when they met for the first time.

President Jiang mentioned that there exists a profound traditional friendship between China and Congo and the two peoples. Since the establishment of diplomatic relations 36 years ago, despite the great changes in the international situation and the domestic situations in the two countries, the two sides have upheld the spirit of the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence, understood and respected each other, tied up with a sincere friendship and treated each other on an equal footing thus enabling the bilateral relations to develop in a sustained and sound manner. Our two countries have conducted fruitful cooperation in political, economic, trade, cultural, education, health care and multilateral fields. In today's world where the trend of multipolarization and economic globalization is constantly developing, we share a common task of maintaining peace and seeking development. To further develop the friendly relations and cooperation between our two countries accords with our common interests. We would like to make concerted efforts together with your country to consolidate and strengthen the sincere cooperation between the two countries in various fields and bring our friendly relations to a new high.

Jiang has noted that China has always attached importance to Africa and placed as an important part of China's foreign policy to develop friendly cooperation with African countries. We support the efforts by African countries in maintaining national sovereignty and territorial integrity, sustaining political stability, developing the economy, raising people's living standards and solving conflicts on the African continent by relying on themselves and through dialogue and negotiation. We would like to continue to provide economic assistance to African countries within our capacities and without attaching any additional condition and conduct mutually beneficial economic cooperation and trade with them through various forms and in a wide range of areas. In order to strengthen cooperation with African countries in the international arena under the new circumstances and jointly explore new means and ways of thinking in developing China-Africa economic cooperation and trade, we have proposed to convene China-Africa Forum for Cooperation-Ministerial Meeting Beijing 2000. We appreciate that His Excellency Mr. President and the Congolese Government have given a positive response and support to the convocation of the Forum. Now the preparations for the meeting are progressing very smoothly. We would like to maintain close consultation and coordination with African countries to make the meeting a complete success. We believe that the meeting is of great significance for further promoting the all-round cooperation between China and Africa in the new century.

President Sassau expressed his delight at coming to China again and extended sincere gratitude to President Jiang for his warm reception. Sassau noted that since the establishment of diplomatic relations in 1964, the friendly relations between the two peoples has stood the test of the time and we are satisfied with and delighted at the development of the current Congo-China relations.

He remarked that the Chinese people has achieved remarkable achievements in its reform and opening up in the past two decades and the vast majority of developing countries have expressed delight at and appreciation of this.

Sassau appreciates the Chinese initiative of holding China-Africa Forum for Cooperation--Ministerial Meeting Beijing 2000 in October this year. He stated that Congo supports the convocation of the meeting and will send a delegation. He also expressed the belief that the meeting is of great importance for strengthening cooperation between the developing countries and dealing with common challenges.

As regards the human rights issue, President Sassau said that Congo supports China's position on the human rights and is ready to strengthen its cooperation with China at the meetings of UN Human Rights Commission

Sassau emphasized that the Congolese Government has always maintained the One China principle and this position on the part of Congo is resolute. We congratulate China on its resumption of exercise of sovereignty over Hong Kong and Macao and believe China will solve the question of Taiwan at an early date and complete the reunification cause of the motherland.

President Jiang expressed his appreciation that the Congolese Government has long upheld the One China position. Jiang emphasized that on the question of Taiwan, Premier Zhu Rongji made our stand and viewpoint very clear when responding to reporters at a press conference following the conclusion of the Third session of the Ninth National People's Congress. The election in the Taiwan region is over. We said before and still hold today that whoever comes to power in Taiwan is welcome to come to the mainland for talks, and that we may also go to Taiwan. But dialogue and negotiations across the Taiwan Straits should have a basis, namely, the One China principle must first be recognized, and under this prerequisite, everything can be discussed.

After the meeting, President Jiang and President Sassau attended the signing ceremony of the agreement on encouraging, promoting and protecting investment, the agreement on China's extending loans to Congo and the agreement on cultural cooperation between the Government of the People's Republic of China and the Government of the Republic of Congo.

After the ceremony, President Sassau conferred the Great Cross Medal of Congo on President Jiang.

Before the formal talks, President Jiang hosted a grand ceremony to welcome the delegation led by President Sassau.