Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday published a signed article titled "Set Sail on a New Voyage for Relations Between China and Pacific Island Countries" on Papua New Guinea's mainstream newspapers ahead of his state visit to the Pacific island country, calling for efforts to further improve ties between China and Pacific island countries.
President Xi noted China's friendly interactions with Papua New Guinea go a long way back. Since the two countries established diplomatic relations in 1976, the two states have treated each other with respect and as equals, and have pursued mutual benefit and win-win cooperation.
Xi hoped his upcoming visit could cement mutual trust, expand practical cooperation, and increase people-to-people exchanges in order to take bilateral ties to a new level.
The rapid growth of China-Papua New Guinea relations is "an epitome of China's overall relations with Pacific island countries," he added.
The Chinese president recalled his group meeting with leaders of the eight Pacific island countries four years ago in Nadi, Fiji, stressing that China and Pacific island countries have adhered to principles including mutual respect, deeper cooperation and frequent people-to-people links in the development of relations.
As the new round of technological revolution and industrial transformation gains momentum across the world, Xi said both China and Pacific island countries face the common task to seize opportunities, overcome difficulties and speed up development.
Xi said he would invite leaders of the eight Pacific island countries that have diplomatic relations with China to join him once again in a gathering during his visit to Papua New Guinea to renew friendship, explore new ways of development and chart the course for future growth of relations.
He hoped the coming meeting could bring the two sides' strategic trust to a higher level, lend fresh impetus to common development and write a new chapter in people-to-people friendship.
"The relations between China and Pacific island countries are now better than ever and face important opportunities of development," Xi said in the article, adding that China is willing to work with Pacific island countries to brave the wind and waves and set sail for a brighter future of relations.
Xi also mentioned he would attend the 26th APEC Economic Leaders' Meeting hosted by Papua New Guinea and said he is willing to exchange views with other member economies on regional economic integration, digital economy, connectivity, and sustainable and inclusive growth.