Joint Declaration between the Republic of Finland and the People’s Republic of China on Establishing and Promoting the future-oriented new-type cooperative partnership

(April 5, 2017, Helsinki)

At the invitation of H.E. Sauli Niinistö, President of the Republic of Finland, H.E. Xi Jinping, President of the People’s Republic of China paid a state visit to Finland from April 4, 2017 to April 6 2017.  

During the visit, President Xi held talks with President Niinistö and met with Prime Minister Sipilä and Speaker Lohela. The two presidents reviewed the considerable progress China and Finland have made in bilateral relations since the establishment of diplomatic relations in 1950 and the time-honored friendship between the two countries. They underlined the dynamic and modern agenda of bilateral relations and confirmed the establishment of the future-oriented new-type cooperative partnership between the two countries by further enhancing political mutual trust and expanding and deepening cooperation to the benefit of the two peoples.

1.    The two sides agreed that bilateral relations are built on a solid foundation of mutual respect, equality and mutual benefit. The two sides reaffirmed their respect for each other’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. Both sides reaffirm their willingness to ensure that their cooperation takes into account each other’s key interests and enhances mutual understanding and political trust in order to guarantee that bilateral relations continue to develop in a stable and sustainable manner.  The Finnish side reaffirms its continued commitment and firm adherence to its one-China policy. The Chinese side appreciates the aforementioned position. Both sides expressed their commitment to the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations and reaffirmed their support for better fulfillment of the duties entrusted by the UN charter. The two sides will work together to promote effective, common responses to global challenges, including climate change and sustainable development.

2.    The future-oriented new-type cooperative partnership between Finland and China is complementary to the EU-China comprehensive strategic partnership. On that basis, the two sides agreed to commit themselves to building the China-EU partnership for peace, growth, reform and civilization, promoting the implementation of the EU-China 2020 Strategic Agenda for Cooperation, and supporting the China-EU negotiations on the investment agreement and EU-China Dialogue on Mobility and Migration. Both sides support China and EU in launching joint feasibility study on an EU-China free trade agreement when the conditions are right and stepping up high-tech trade cooperation. Finland appreciates China’s initiative to build the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road, and supports China and the EU in exploring an integrated and mutually beneficial approach, including promoting the cooperation under the framework of ASEM, to promote connectivity between Europe and Asia in a compatible way, jointly building the Asia-Europe grand market and increasing the flow of people, business, capital and technology and information and communication between the two continents. The two sides will promote possibilities for Sino-Nordic cooperation.

3.    The two sides underlined the importance of high-level political exchanges for the development of bilateral relations and agreed to maintain the frequency of exchanges of high-level visits between the two sides to enhance mutual understanding and trust. Both sides are committed to increasing exchanges and cooperation between their central and local governments, legislatures, judiciaries and political parties. The two Foreign Ministries will continue to maintain the existing political consultation mechanisms, to exchange views on bilateral relations, international situation and regional issues of mutual interest and concern. 

4.    The two sides will actively implement the important consensus on Finland-China partnership reached by the two presidents, step up political guidance and overall coordination at the national level, continue to broaden and deepen practical cooperation in such areas as two-way trade and investment, innovation, environmental protection and urbanization, give positive consideration to setting up the need for result-oriented cross-sectoral cooperation platforms, and make full use of the existing bilateral cooperation framework, particularly Chinese-Finnish Joint Commission on Economic, Industrial and Technical Cooperation and Chinese-Finnish Joint Commission on Scientific and Technical Cooperation.

5.    The two sides will make joint efforts to increase the level of mutual investment and encourage domestic enterprises to invest in the other side. The two sides will work to ensure timely and proper handling of visa and residence permit applications by business representatives from the other side. The two sides will do their utmost to create positive and stable environment to do business. The two countries will promote balanced growth of two-way trade, eliminate trade barriers in all forms and protect intellectual property rights. Both sides are committed to deepening bilateral exchanges and cooperation in technology trade.

6.    Both sides are committed to deepening exchanges and cooperation on innovation to make it an important engine of sustainable economic and social development of the two countries, and will further promote cooperation on high-level scientific research and innovation in areas of mutual interest. In addition to ministerial meetings and regular conferences on science and technology, the two sides will encourage their institutes and enterprises to carry out joint scientific research and innovation projects and provide support to their effort in this area. Both sides support the establishment of joint research and innovation platforms and are committed to leveraging the positive role of science and innovation in promoting sustainable development of the two countries and meeting the challenges of globalization.

7.    People-to-people contacts and cultural exchanges are part and parcel of bilateral relationship and are of great importance for its long-term development. The two countries will strengthen exchanges as well as trade and investment collaboration on culture and education and in areas closely linked to economic and social development. The two sides will intensify cooperation in cultural and creative industries and in promoting cultural diversity. Finland supports the establishment of a Chinese Cultural Center in Helsinki, and both sides agree to actively consult each other on the establishment of a Finnish Cultural Center in Beijing, if an opportunity arises.  Cultural cooperation, as well as exchanges and cooperation between the youth, play an important role in strengthening mutual understanding and friendship between the two peoples.  

Education and life-long learning play a key role in creating sustainable social development.  Educational cooperation, including teacher training and research on learning, will extend to all levels in order to co-create modern learning solutions to foster 21st century skills. Both sides agreed that the Confucius Institute has played an important role in deepening mutual understanding and exchanges between the two peoples. The two sides will encourage exchanges between think tanks, and provide intellectual support to promoting cooperation. People-to-people exchanges will be enhanced in education, research and innovation cooperation. 

8.    The two sides will further deepen cooperation on circular economy, resource utilization efficiency and sustainable development. The two sides will strengthen collaboration on efficient and sustainable production and use of energy, energy equipment and technical standards, efficient recycling of resources, resource productivity, development of electricity grid flexibility and smart grid solutions, waste management, renewable energy, utilization of biomass energy, sustainable water resources management,  carry out information exchange in environmental protection, air quality and environment monitoring technology. The two sides will encourage their relevant government agencies, organizations and enterprises, the SMEs in particular, municipal governments and research and academic institutions to establish direct links and strengthen communication in these areas, so as to boost cooperation in two-way trade, investment and innovation. The two sides will continue to deepen cooperation and promote the construction of Finnish-Chinese ecological parks.

9.    The two sides will deepen cooperation in new-type urbanization and green ecological smart city construction, focusing on sustainable city planning and building technology, urban adaptation to climate change, energy efficiency of buildings and green building technology, prefabricated building and green construction materials. Both sides are committed to working together to reduce or limit greenhouse gas emissions, promote sustainable development and strengthen climate change adaptation and mitigation efforts.

10.    Building on their long-lasting and successful cooperation in forestry and forest product industry, the two sides will promote closer cooperation in forestry both bilaterally and internationally. They will further enhance cooperation on agricultural productivity and agro-product quality and safety, and work together to promote the establishment of a Chinese-Finnish platform for agricultural development and innovation. The two sides will also carry out exchanges and cooperation in the regulation of food, medicine, medical devices and cosmetics. Besides, the two sides will further promote the practical cooperation between Finnish and Chinese enterprises on non-ferrous metal-related technology, technical equipment, trade in commodities and mining.
11.    Both sides hope to tap the potential in cooperating in transport and information and communication technology (ICT). They are ready to advance transport cooperation, especially in the fields of innovative transport services, green, smart and safe transport, railway infrastructure and air transport connection development. Priority will be given to cooperation on broadband networks, ‘Internet Plus’, mobile communication technology, cloud computing and training of IT professionals. The two sides will also explore cooperation in building telecom connectivity between Asia and Europe.

12.    Both sides agreed that an open, secure, stable, accessible and peaceful ICT environment is essential for all and requires effective cooperation among States to reduce risks to international peace and security.

13.    Given the vulnerability of the Arctic environment, the two sides shared the view that economic activities in the Arctic area should take into full consideration the protection and sustainable use of its natural resources. The two countries will intensify economic and technological cooperation in the fields of arctic marine industry, arctic geology, marine and polar research (including polar weather and sea ice monitoring and forecast), environmental protection technology, shipping and maritime safety, including vessel monitoring and reporting, ICT and tourism.

14.    The two sides spoke highly of their cooperation on rule of law and social issues, believing that bilateral cooperation in the judicial field, which began in 1995, has progressed well with fruitful results. The two sides will enhance practical cooperation in the legal and judicial fields and in police intelligence sharing on cross border criminality. Both sides emphasize the importance of promotion and protection of human rights and the rule of law.

15.    Both sides will promote cooperation in actively addressing the issue of the aging of population and developing elderly care services, social assistance and poverty governance, and enhance knowledge, experience and information exchanges by organizing experts’ discussions and mutual visits.

16.    The two sides agreed that tourism cooperation is an important sector of bilateral people-to-people contacts, cultural exchanges and practical cooperation. Both sides agreed to further tourism cooperation, support the collaboration of national tourism organizations, and promote the development of related industries in order to enhance the scale of two-way visits. The two sides decided to make full use of the China-EU Tourism Year 2018 and bring China-Finland tourism cooperation to a new level. 

17.    The two sides expressed their commitment to the further promotion of exchanges and cooperation in the field of sport. Taking the opportunity of Beijing 2022 Olympic Winter Games, both sides will promote the exchanges in winter sports and the cooperation in the organization of the Olympic Games. Both sides will support collaboration of sport organizations, sport institutes and enterprises in education, research and training in sports as well as holding major sport events.