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Chinese PM set to begin Europe tour

Beijing: Chinese Prime Minister Li Keqiang will begin his Europe tour on Tuesday aimed at enriching Beijing’s ties with the European Union (EU), officials announced on Monday.

Li will travel to Germany and Belgium and along with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and European Council President Donald Tusk will preside over the 19th China-EU leaders’ meeting on Thursday and Friday, Efe news reported.

“We will send a common message of jointly working to build an open world economy, supporting the globalization of trade and investment,” said Vice Minister of Foreign Affair Wang Chao at a press conference here.

Li’s visit comes at a time of rising uncertainty among Western economies over the fallouts of Brexit and disagreements between the EU and the US over various issues, including climate change.

With this in mind, China is preparing to present itself as a stable political and economic partner of the EU.

“China and Europe, by working together, will become a stabilising force in the current situation and inject positive energy to the recovery of the global economy,” added Wang.

In Belgium, Li will meet Prime Minister Charles Michel and finalise key agreements.

In Germany, Li will meet German Chancellor Angela Merkel for an annual meeting, in place since 2004. He is likely to sign an agreement with German automation firms to increase the number of electric vehicles on China’s roads.

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