Jakarta, 25 April 2011

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Ahead of Premier Wen Jiabao of the People’s Republic of China’s visit to Jakarta this week, Secretary-General of ASEAN, Dr Surin Pitsuwan, stated that “the year 2011 will be a very fruitful one for ASEAN-China dialogue relations.”

This year marks the 20th anniversary of ASEAN-China dialogue relations. Under the theme “ASEAN-China: Mutually Beneficial and Win-Win Partners,” ASEAN and China will be implementing a series of activities to promote good-neighbourly relations, deepen cooperation and consolidate people-to-people friendship.

The message was well received by Mr Yang Jiechi, Foreign Affairs Minister of the People’s Republic of China. The two met during the Boao Forum for Asia Annual Conference 2011 in Hainan, China, earlier this month. Mr Yang underscored that practical cooperation between ASEAN and China has entered a new phase.

During the meeting, Mr Yang also welcomed the participation of the United States and Russia in the East Asia Summit (EAS). However, China believes that ASEAN should continue to play a central role in the expanded EAS. Mr Yang added that the EAS should focus on issues related to promoting national development and people’s welfare.