BEIJING, Dec. 1 (Xinhua) -- Chinese President Xi Jinping held talks with visiting President of the European Council Charles Michel in Beijing on Thursday.
Xi said President Michel's visit to China after the conclusion of the 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) -- on behalf of all European Union member states -- demonstrates the good will of the EU toward the development of relations with China.
Noting that China and the EU are two major forces for world peace, two major markets for common development and two major civilizations for human progress, Xi said it is in the common interests of China, the EU and the international community to maintain the upward momentum of China-EU relations and pursue mutual benefits.
The more turbulent the international situation becomes and the more prominent the global challenges become, the greater the global significance of China-EU relations will be, he added.
Xi also mentioned Comrade Jiang Zemin, saying Jiang passed away on Wednesday in Shanghai due to illness after medical treatment had failed. During his tenure as China's state leader, Comrade Jiang attached great importance to the development of China-EU relations. He visited European countries many times, maintained close contact with leaders of the EU and European countries, promoted the establishment of the China-EU leaders' meeting mechanism, and promoted dialogue and cooperation between the two sides in various fields.
"We will carry on his legacy and continue to consolidate and develop China-EU relations," Xi said, adding that China will continue to view and develop its relations with the EU from a strategic and long-term perspective, and stands ready to strengthen strategic communication and coordination with the EU to ensure the steady growth of the China-EU comprehensive strategic partnership.
Xi expounded on the key outcomes of the 20th CPC National Congress and the five features of Chinese modernization. He stressed that at present amid accelerated changes in the world, the times and history, all countries are thinking about the road ahead. The 20th CPC National Congress has given China's answer: We will follow the path of socialism with Chinese characteristics, apply a people-centered development philosophy, and remain committed to deepening reform and opening up; and we will remain firm in pursuing an independent foreign policy of peace, keep to the foreign policy goals of upholding world peace and promoting common development, and stay committed to promoting the building of a human community with a shared future.
Noting that China's development marks a growing force for world peace, Xi said China will never seek hegemony or expansion, and that this is the solemn political commitment of the CPC and reflects the will of the more than 1.4 billion Chinese people.
"We have the confidence and ability to inject valuable certainty and stability into the international community through the stability of our system, governance, policies and development," he added.
Noting that the Chinese path to modernization and the European integration are choices that China and the EU have respectively made with an eye on the future, Xi said the two sides should have mutual understanding and mutual support for each other, and that China hopes that the EU will become an important partner in China's pursuit of the Chinese path to modernization and share the opportunities offered by China's market, institutional opening up and deepening international cooperation.