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Premier Li calls to strengthen ties with Afghanistan

Updated: Dec 15,2015 8:58 PM     Xinhua

Premier Li Keqiang (R) meets with Afghanistan’s CEO Abdullah Abdullah, who is here to attend the 14th Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) prime ministers’ meeting, in Zhengzhou, Central China’s Henan province, Dec 15, 2015. [Photo/Xinhua]

ZHENGZHOU — Premier Li Keqiang on Dec 15 met with Afghanistan’s CEO Abdullah Abdullah in Zhengzhou, calling for further economic and security cooperation between the two neighbors.

China encourages companies to invest in Afghanistan’s key projects and boost bilateral trade, Premier Li told Abdullah, who is in the central Chinese city for a meeting of prime ministers from the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) member states.

The two countries can work with each other in transportation, water resources, renewable energy and human resources. Afghanistan can make full use of its geographic advantages and help improve regional connectivity, he added.

Premier Li Keqiang meets with Afghanistan’s CEO Abdullah Abdullah, who is here to attend the 14th Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) prime ministers’ meeting, in Zhengzhou, central China’s Henan province, Dec 15, 2015. [Photo/Xinhua]

Premier Li also called on both countries to step up counter-terrorism and security cooperation. He said China supports Afghanistan’s peace and reconciliation process, in which China can play a constructive role.

The SCO should contribute to the restoration of peace and stability in Afghanistan, who in turn can play an active role in cooperation within the framework of the SCO, he said.

Abdullah said China is always a trustworthy friend and partner of Afghanistan. China’s policy of promoting peace and support for the reconstruction of Afghanistan is conducive to regional stability.

China’s investment in transportation, energy and hydropower are in line with Afghanistan’s need for economic development. Afghanistan will do its best to ensure smooth implementation of the projects, he added.

The SCO, founded in 2001, currently has six member states — China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan. Afghanistan, India, Iran, Mongolia and Pakistan are observers. Belarus, Turkey and Sri Lanka are dialogue partners.

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