President Sauli Niinistö and Chinese President Xi Jinping with spouses on 6 April 2013. Photo: Lehtikuva
President of the Republic Sauli Niinistö met Xi Jinping, President of China, on Hainan island in China on Saturday 6 April 2013. President Niinistö began the meeting by congratulating the President on his recent election.
The Presidents discussed the development of bilateral relations between Finland and China, the economic situation and China relations of the EU, and international issues. The rule of law and human rights were also discussed.
President Xi shared some of China’s views about the situation in North Korea. Both Finland and China are concerned about developments on the Korean peninsula and consider it essential for tensions to be defused.
In the talks, President Niinistö noted that Finland has a lot to offer China. The two countries agreed to initiate preparations for enhancing cooperation and updating it into a closer partnership. Partnership preparations will be begun in talks between the foreign ministries of the two countries.
“Finland has expertise to offer in the areas of sustainable urban planning, energy efficiency, clean tech, bioenergy, water purification, architecture and design above all. We share the goal of green growth,” said President Niinistö.
Finnish companies have made substantial investments in China. President Niinistö encouraged China to invest in Finland. “Finland is an excellent and stable investment environment,” he said.
The global economy and the eurozone situation were also featured at the meeting. President Niinistö explained how Finland views the euro crisis. The EU and China are economically dependent on one another, and President Niinistö stressed that there is still much unrealised potential.
President Niinistö noted that Finland and China have an extensive history of fruitful cooperation in judicial matters. Finland hopes that this cooperation will foster the development of the rule of law and human rights. President Xi noted that China is also satisfied with this cooperation and is willing to continue it.
At the meeting, President Niinistö also presented an invitation for President Xi to visit Finland.
From Hainan to Beijing
President of the Republic Sauli Niinistö and his spouse Jenni Haukio are making a state visit to China on 6–10 April. On Sunday 7 April, President Niinistö will attend the high-level Boao Forum for Asia on Hainan. President Niinistö will be the keynote speaker at a sessions on the economic situation in Europe.
From Hainan, President Niinistö will travel to Beijing to meet Prime Minister Li Keqiang and Yu Zhengsheng, the Chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference. The programme also includes corporate meetings. The President’s entourage in Beijing includes Alexander Stubb, Minister for European Affairs and Foreign Trade, and a delegation of business leaders.
President Niinistö will return to Finland on 10 April.
- 4/7/2013 Speech by President of the Republic of Finland Sauli Niinistö at the Structural Reform Revitalize the Core Competitiveness of EU – Roundtable at Boao Forum for Asia