BEIJING, March 18 (Xinhua) -- Chinese President Xi Jinping held a phone conversation with Cambodian Prime Minister Samdech Techo Hun Sen on Friday, with both sides agreeing to promote Belt and Road cooperation.
The two sides should engage in high-quality joint Belt and Road construction, speed up the construction of major projects such as highways, airports and special economic zones, and expand cooperation in emerging fields such as finance and digital economy, Xi said.
Xi noted that with the joint efforts of both sides, China-Cambodia relations have withstood tests and grown even more unbreakable.
Facing major global changes and the pandemic, both unseen in a century, China and Cambodia have firmly promoted the building of a community with a shared future, setting an example of forging a new type of international relations, he said.
The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership and the China-Cambodia free trade agreement should be fully tapped to push bilateral trade to a new level, Xi said.
The Chinese side will import more high-quality agricultural products from Cambodia, carry out more cooperation with Cambodia to improve people's welfare, and implement such projects related to roads and education in rural areas, so as to help develop agriculture in Cambodia and lift farmers out of poverty, he noted.
China will continue to support Cambodia in its fight against the COVID-19 pandemic and explore new models of people-to-people and cultural exchanges with Cambodia against the backdrop of the pandemic.
Xi stressed that China firmly supports the central role of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) in the regional cooperation architecture, and supports the bloc in playing a bigger role in regional and international affairs.
China also supports Cambodia in carrying out its duty as the rotating president of ASEAN this year, Xi said, adding that China stands ready to work with Cambodia and other ASEAN countries to push for the continuous development of the China-ASEAN comprehensive strategic partnership.
Hun Sen sincerely congratulated China on the successful hosting of the Beijing Winter Olympics and Paralympics and the successful convening of the "two sessions."
The prime minister said he believes that under the strong leadership of President Xi, China will make more great achievements.
The rapid growth of Cambodia-China bilateral trade and smooth progress of major projects under the framework of jointly building the Belt and Road have demonstrated the achievements of their comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership and the building of a Cambodia-China community with a shared future, Hun Sen said, adding that it shows Cambodia and China are true ironclad brothers.
Cambodia firmly adheres to the one-China policy and firmly supports China's position on issues related to Taiwan and Xinjiang, he noted.
The Cambodian side is ready to take the 65th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between the two countries next year as an opportunity to deepen exchanges and cooperation in economy and trade, agriculture, as well as people-to-people and cultural exchanges and other fields, and advance the Belt and Road cooperation, so as to lift the Cambodia-China comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership to a new level.
Hun Sen thanked China for providing material supplies, vaccines and other assistance to Cambodia in its fight against COVID-19, expressing his hope for stronger anti-pandemic cooperation.
As the rotating chair of ASEAN this year, Cambodia will continue to actively promote the development of ASEAN-China relations, he added.
The two leaders also exchanged views on the situation in Ukraine. The two sides agree to uphold a balanced and fair position and make positive efforts to promote peace talks. ■