A China-Europe freight train carrying medical supplies bound for Madrid of Spain departs from the city of Yiwu, East China's Zhejiang province, on June 5, 2020. [Photo/Xinhua]

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President has telephone talks with leaders of Spain, Montenegro, Nepal

President Xi Jinping has underlined the importance of adhering to the general direction of relations between China and the European Union from a strategic perspective and appropriately managing their differences, as opportunities as well as challenges are envisaged for their ties in the future.

Xi told Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez during a phone conversation on Wednesday that he hoped the Spanish government would continue to play its constructive role in promoting the steady and lasting development of China-EU relations.

Despite the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, huge potential has been revealed from pragmatic cooperation between China and the EU, Xi said, noting that the basic idea of China-EU ties that feature cooperation based on win-win results should be maintained.

China stands ready to expand two-way trade exchanges with Spain, promote cooperative projects in areas such as port logistics and smart cities, strengthen third-party market cooperation in Latin America and Africa, and deepen bilateral people-to-people exchanges, he said.

Xi also stressed strengthening political party exchanges and the sharing of governance experience between the two countries, which would further improve global governance.

Sanchez said that it is more necessary than ever for all countries to unite and cooperate and safeguard multilateralism in the face of severe challenges brought by the pandemic.

Spain welcomes investment from Chinese companies and will continue to play a positive role in pushing forward the development of the EU-China strategic partnership, Sanchez said.

Also on Wednesday, Xi had a phone conversation with Milo Djukanovic, the president of Montenegro, saying that China will work with the country to implement the consensus and outcome of a summit held via video link in February between China and Central and Eastern European Countries.

As this year was designated as the China-CEEC Year of Green Development and Environmental Protection, China supports Montenegro playing a positive role in leading this mechanism, he said.

Xi said that, faced with changes unseen in a century and the pandemic, China is willing to work with Montenegro to consolidate political mutual trust, deepen pragmatic cooperation in all areas including infrastructure, and promote the continuous development of bilateral ties, benefiting the people of both countries.

Djukanovic said that the joint building of the Belt and Road Initiative and the CEEC-China cooperation mechanism have brought important opportunities and tangible benefits to countries in the region including Montenegro.

His country will continue to actively participate in and firmly promote the in-depth development of CEEC-China cooperation and steadfastly uphold multilateralism, he said.

In a phone call on Wednesday with Nepalese President Bidhya Devi Bhandari, Xi said that China will continue to provide as much support as possible for Nepal's fight against the pandemic as the South Asian region faces a devastating second wave of COVID-19.

On Tuesday, Nepal reported 8,387 new cases of coronavirus infection and 169 deaths across the country.

Xi said that the Chinese central government, local authorities and nongovernmental organizations have quickly acted and provided medical supplies, equipment and vaccines that are urgently needed by Nepal and shared prevention and treatment experience with the country.

Xi said that he believed the Nepalese people will surely defeat the pandemic at an early date.

As this year marks the 50th anniversary of the restoration of China's legitimate rights at the United Nations, Xi said that China would not forget the precious support from Nepal and will, as always, support Nepal in maintaining its national sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity.

Bhandari hailed the great achievements that China has made in economic and social development under the leadership of the Communist Party of China, especially in poverty eradication and space exploration.

Her country is committed to the one-China policy and will never allow any forces to conduct anti-China activities on Nepalese soil, she said.

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