Chinese President Xi Jinping (L) holds a welcoming ceremony for Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan before their talks at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, capital of China, March 25, 2015.

[ad id=”1838″]BEIJING, March 25 (Xinhua) — Chinese President Xi Jinping held talks with his Armenian counterpart Serzh Sarkisian on Wednesday, both pledging to cement ties and boost cooperation.

The Armenian president is paying a state visit to China this week. He will attend the the Boao Forum for Asia Annual Conference 2015, which will be held from March 26 to March 29 in south China’s Hainan province.

Serzh-Sargsyan-ChinaHailing the smooth development of the relationship over the 23 years since the establishment of diplomatic ties, Xi said the two sides should continue supporting each other on their development paths, core interests and efforts for prosperity.

The Chinese government will encourage domestic enterprises to participate in transportation, mining, electricity, information technology and infrastructure sectors in Armenia, Xi said.

The two presidents agreed to cooperate on the Silk Road Economic Belt initiative, which provides historic cooperation opportunities.

China will make use of its advantages in technology and equipment and will work with Armenia to establish appropriate means of cooperation, Xi said.

He said he hoped Armenia will help promote cooperation between China and the Eurasian Economic Union, which includes Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Armenia.

Sarkisian said the Armenian and Chinese people have enjoyed a long history of friendship, dating back to the times of the ancient Silk Road.

Hailing the increasing economic cooperation and political trust between the two countries since Armenian independence, Sarkisian expressed his gratitude to China for political support and economic assistance.

Armenia hopes its major highway and railway projects could be included in the framework of the proposed Silk Road Economic Belt, the visiting president said.

The two leaders were upbeat that cultural and people-to-people exchanges between the two countries could increase.

Xi suggested the two sides enhance coordination in major international and regional affairs to promote peace, security and stability in the world.

As this year is the 70th anniversary of the victory of World War II and China’s victory in the Chinese People’s War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression, Xi said China and Armenia should work together with all people and nations who cherish peace to safeguard international peace and justice.

According to Xi, more than 6,000 Armenian soldiers from the Soviet Red Army joined China’s fight against Japanese invaders.

Sarkisian said China played an important role in safeguarding world peace and that he admired China’s policy of treating all countries, big or small, equally and always developing relations with other countries on the basis of equality and mutual respect.

Armenia looked forward to closer cooperation with China with a view to secure win-win results, Sarkisian said.

Lauding China’s great contribution to World War II, Sarkisian said the Armenian people would work together with the Chinese people to commemorate the victory.

Serzh-Sargsyan-ChinaAfter their talks, the two leaders inked a joint statement on enhancing friendly cooperation, in which it was pledged that cooperation on currency swap, human rights, reform of the United Nations and fight against terrorism would be boosted.

According to the statement, Sarkisian has invited Xi to make a state visit to Armenia. The Chinese president has accepted the invitation.

Afterwards, Xi and Sarkisian witnessed the signing of a string of deals on trade, finance, judicial affairs, law enforcement, customs, education and tourism.

Prior to their talks, Xi held a red carpet ceremony to welcome the Armenian president. [blog_list style=”def” display=”specific” category=”null” specific=”1719″] [images cols=”five” lightbox=”true”]
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