HAVANA, July 31 (Xinhua) — Visiting Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi on Saturday said that China and Cuba share profound traditional friendship and huge potential for boosting bilateral cooperation.
In an interview on his ongoing trip to the Caribbean island state, Yang spoke highly of the friendship between the two countries, which he said has been deeply rooted in the hearts of the two peoples.
Noting that Cuba was the first Latin American country to establish diplomatic ties with China, the top Chinese diplomat said that the China-Cuba relations, characterized by friendly cooperation of mutual benefits, have stood various tests during the past five decades despite the constant changes of the volatile international situation.
Meanwhile, recent years have seen the two countries gain mounting momentum in the development of their relations and the two peoples show increasing readiness for more exchange and cooperation, Yang added.
China and Cuba are “good comrades, good friends and good partners,” said the Chinese foreign minister.
This year the two countries are marking the 50th anniversary of their diplomatic relations, which marked a new beginning of their bilateral ties, Yang said, adding that both sides should seize this opportunity to promote bilateral exchange and cooperation in various fields.
The foundation for cooperation is very strong in fields of culture, education and health, said the Chinese official, while expressing satisfaction over the smooth operation of the Confucius Institute at Havana University and a jointly-financed ophthalmic hospital.
He also called for more frequent exchanges between the young people of the two countries.
Meanwhile, Yang said the two countries have plenty opportunities for cooperation in trade and investment, especially in energy, mechanical and electronical equipment, and mineral products.
At the invitation of his Cuban counterpart Bruno Rodriguez, Yang arrived in Cuba on Friday for a three-day official visit, his first as China’s foreign minister.
The trip, Yang said, is aimed at discussing with Rodriguez ways to further enhance bilateral ties and cooperation in international and regional affairs.