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Premier Li welcomes Aung San Suu Kyi

Premier Li Keqiang has met with Myanmar’s first State Counselor Aung San Suu Kyi in Beijing. Both leaders agreed to maintain mutual respect, strengthen political trust and cooperation.

Premier Li Keqiang has met with Myanmar’s first State Counselor Aung San Suu Kyi in Beijing. Both leaders agreed to maintain mutual respect, strengthen political trust and cooperation.

Myanmar State Counselor Aung San Suu Kyi is on her five-day visit to China. This trip makes her the first leader from Myanmar to visit China since the new government was formed in late March.

Premier Li Keqiang held a welcoming ceremony for Aung San Suu Kyi at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. During their meeting, both leaders agreed to promote the China-Myanmar relationship, based on the “Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence”, which was issued by China in 1953.

Premier Li said this year marks the 25th anniversary of China-ASEAN dialogue and relations, and China attaches great importance to the role that Myanmar has played as a crucial ASEAN member state. China hopes to work with Myanmar and other ASEAN countries to enhance interconnectivity in the region.

Premier Li said China hopes to press ahead with major cooperation projects, including an oil and gas pipeline and the Myitsone dam. The dam project was a joint venture between the two countries, but it was suspended by the former government of Myanmar 5 years ago. The new government has set up a 20-member commission to study and review dam projects. Aung San Suu Kyi said she hopes that relations between the two countries can be “further consolidated and developed”.

After the meeting, the two leaders witnessed the signing of several agreements, in the fields of energy, infrastructure construction, trade and the economy.

“President Xi Jinping and top legislator Zhang Dejiang will meet with Aung San Suu Kyi on Aug 19. Suu Kyi will also pay visit to other cities, including Xian in Shaanxi province and Kunming in Yunnan province,” vice foreign minister Liu Zhenmin said.

China is Myanmar’s top trading partner, and a key source of investment. China has launched multiple cooperative programmes in the region, including China-ASEAN Free Trade Area and the Bangladesh-China-India-Myanmar Economic Corridor. Aung San Suu Kyi’s visit is aimed at building better relationship with China to help boost economic development and regional stability.