Chinese Premier Li Keqiang (L) and his Australian counterpart Malcolm Turnbull hold the fifth annual meeting of the two prime ministers in Canberra, Australia, March 24, 2017. (Xinhua/Li Xueren)
CANBERRA, March 24 (Xinhua) -- China and Australia should focus on building stronger cooperative platforms of bilateral free trade, integration of development strategies, technological innovation and regional economic cooperation to further bilateral ties, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang said Friday.
With the help of these key platforms, both sides will actively expand cooperation in various fields, and explore new business models of cooperation, Li said.
Li made the remarks when holding the fifth annual meeting with his Australian counterpart, Malcolm Turnbull, at Parliament House in Canberra.
Noting that the two countries enjoy complementary economic advantages, highly interwoven interests, and a bright future for cooperation, Li urged the two sides to build up their dialogue mechanisms in sectors of innovation, energy and security.
Since China and Australia lifted their relations to a comprehensive strategic partnership during Chinese President Xi Jinping's visit to Australia in 2014, the two countries have seen an increasingly stronger relationship and a fruitful bilateral cooperation in all fields, Li said.
China and Australia share broad common interests in promoting development, boosting regional economic growth and addressing global challenges, he said, adding that China will work with Australia to enhance mutual trust in the spirit of mutual respect and equality.
China will also work with Australia to advance pragmatic cooperation in such fields as economy, trade, people-to-people exchanges and security of law enforcement, Li said.
The premier called on both sides to better review their free trade agreement and discuss the possibilities of including more sectors such as service trade and investment into the deal, so as to promote free trade, economic globalization, trade and investment liberalization, and to oppose trade protectionism and build an open world economy.
As two important countries in the Asia-Pacific, China and Australia should strengthen communication and coordination in regional and global affairs and contribute to regional peace and stability, Li said.
For his part, Turnbull highly praised China's efforts in promoting economic globalization and creating a more open market.
He added that the China-Australia free trade agreement, serving as the foundation of the economic growth of the two countries and cooperation between them, will help increase the well-beings of the two peoples.
As a long-term reliable partner of China, Australia will make joint efforts with China in deepening exchanges, friendship and cooperation to promote peace and stability for both countries and the world at large, Turnbull said.
Following their meeting, Li and Turnbull witnessed the signing of a number of bilateral cooperation documents in such fields as economy and trade, innovation, agriculture, food, intellectual property, security of law enforcement, tourism and education.
Li arrived here Wednesday night for an official visit to Australia. On Thursday, he also met with Governor-General Peter Cosgrove, parliamentary leaders and the opposition Labor Party's leader Bill Shorten.
Following his Australian trip, the Chinese premier will pay an official visit to New Zealand. Li's visits to the two Oceanian countries are the first by a Chinese premier in 11 years.