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Today in Beijing, as part of her official visit to China, the President of the Riigikogu Ene Ergma met Li Changchun, a member of the Presidium of the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China. Ergma also met Wu Bangguo, the Chairman of the National People’s Congress of China (the parliament), and the Vice-Chairman Hua Jianmin. The parties discussed Estonian-Chinese bilateral relations as well as relations in the framework of the European Union in a wider perspective.

Ergma stressed the importance of parliamentary diplomacy in international relations and expressed her hope that the economic and cultural ties between Estonia and China will only strengthen in the future. Ergma also expressed her delight that a great power like China feels it important to communicate with all countries, large or small. “This gives Estonia the opportunity to develop cooperation with China in all areas,” she said.
 

Estonia and China reiterated their readiness to develop economic and cultural relations in particular. It was highlighted that comprehensive mutual cooperation would benefit from a better knowledge of each other’s language and culture. Ergma noted that China has firmly withstood the turmoil of the global economic crisis, as exemplified in the excellent organisation of the Shanghai EXPO. The President of the Riigikogu also gave an overview of the Estonian economic situation, stressing the opportunities offered by the accession to the Euro zone this year. Ergma also talked about Estonia’s progress in information technology and e-state. “We believe that our experiences in developing e-solutions could form a common interest of the two countries,” she said.

Several aspects of parliamentary cooperation were also discussed. Both parties stressed the need for closer cooperation at the level of standing committees, noting that it is in the power of the parliament to promote the development of the state in many different spheres.
 

Next on Ergma’s Chinese itinerary are Sichuan province and Hong Kong special administrative region. The Riigikogu delegation in China also includes Members of the Riigikogu Kaia Iva, Mart Jüssi, Väino Linde and Kalle Laanet, as well as the Secretary General of the Chancellery of the Riigikogu Heiki Sibul.

The Riigikogu Press Service
 
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