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China-ASEAN ties heading for maturity

Updated: Sep 7,2016 3:44 PM

Premier Li Keqiang attended the 19th China-ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) Summit in Vientiane, Laos, on Sept 7 and praised the relationship.

After Premier Li’s opening speech, leaders of the 10 ASEAN countries also made speeches on expanding China-ASEAN cooperation and creating a peaceful and stable regional environment.

Then the Premier made remarks in response, delivering a conclusion summary to reiterate China’s support of ASEAN.

Premier Li said that China is the first country outside the region to join the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Southeast Asia, support the dominant role of ASEAN in regional cooperation, establish strategic partnership with ASEAN, express public willingness to sign the protocol of the Southeast Asia Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone Treaty, and start free trade zone negotiations with ASEAN.

This year marks the 25 anniversary of China-ASEAN dialogue relations, said the Premier, who added that the bilateral relationship has become increasingly mature. The two sides have firmly maintained cooperation since 1991, and the relationship has made great progress, which has greatly boosted regional stability and prosperity.