Chinese President Xi Jinping spoke with French President Emmanuel Macron on the phone on Tuesday afternoon.
Xi noted his close contact with Macron over the past five years, which has helped guide the two countries in sustaining the positive momentum of bilateral ties, conducting fruitful cooperation, and fulfilling the responsibilities of major countries on climate change, biodiversity conservation and other issues.
In a world undergoing changes unseen in a century, China and France, two permanent members on the United Nations Security Council and independent major countries, should uphold "independence, mutual understanding, strategic vision and win-win cooperation," a commitment the two sides made when establishing diplomatic relations, stick to their close and enduring comprehensive strategic partnership, respect each other's core interests and major concerns, and strengthen coordination and cooperation in the bilateral, China-Europe and global contexts, he said.
Xi added that China will keep close exchanges with France at all levels to promote the healthy growth of China-France relations and maintain world peace and stability.
Xi stressed the need to identify, through bilateral dialogue mechanisms, cooperation priorities in the coming five years. He called on the two sides to step up cooperation in emerging areas including artificial intelligence and clean energy, while advancing cooperation in traditional areas like civilian nuclear energy, and aerospace.
The Chinese president said China is ready to import more quality products from France, welcomes French financial and hi-tech companies to China for business cooperation, and hopes that the French side will provide a fair, equitable and non-discriminatory business environment for Chinese enterprises that conduct investment and cooperation in France.
Xi said that it is important that China and France make good use of big occasions like the 60th anniversary of China-France diplomatic relations and the Paris Olympics, both to take place in 2024, as important opportunities to further increase people-to-people and cultural exchanges and enhance mutual understanding.
He added that the two sides should follow true multilateralism, uphold the international system with the United Nations at its core and the international order based on international law, support multi-polarity and economic globalization, and deepen cooperation on climate change and biodiversity.
Xi stressed that the two sides need to increase communication and coordination at the Group of 20 and on global food and energy security, expand trilateral cooperation in Africa and other regions, and explore cooperation on the Global Development Initiative and the Global Security Initiative.
The Chinese president pointed out that the steady and sound growth of China-EU relations serves the interests of people in China, in Europe and in all other countries, adding that China appreciates France's commitment to strategic autonomy, and hopes that France will encourage the EU to keep a right perception of China and work with China in the same direction by managing differences properly and building on converging interests for closer cooperation in economy and trade, green and digital development, and people-to-people exchanges.
Xi also expressed his hope for France, who holds the rotating presidency of the EU, to play a positive role in promoting the sound development of China-EU relations.
For his part, Macron commended the open spirit with which the two sides have developed their relations since establishing diplomatic ties.
Over the past five years, the two sides have carried out fruitful cooperation across the board, Macron said.
For the next five years, France will work with China to deepen cooperation in areas including agriculture, aviation, civilian nuclear energy and culture and to scale up cooperation in climate change and biodiversity, with a view to greater achievements in France-China relations, said the French president.
France is willing to play a positive role in the development of EU-China relations, he added.
The two leaders also exchanged views on the situation in Ukraine and agreed that relevant parties should support Russia and Ukraine in restoring peace through negotiations.
Xi stressed that China has been working in its own way to promote peace talks, and that China supports European countries in keeping the security of Europe in their own hands.
He urged vigilance against bloc confrontation, which poses a bigger and more persistent threat to global security and stability.
Macron noted the many common understandings between France and China on the issue of Ukraine, adding that France stands ready for closer coordination and cooperation with China at both bilateral and multilateral levels.
France and the EU are committed to strategic autonomy and will not endorse or take part in bloc confrontation, he said.