Xi meets Caribbean leaders

Updated: 2013-06-03 03:48

By Zhu Zhe in Port of Spain (chinadaily.com.cn)

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Chinese President Xi Jinping met with leaders of five Caribbean countries on Sunday morning in Port of Spain, capital of Trinidad and Tobago. It's the first leg of Xi's three-nation tour in Latin America.

Leaders from Dominica, Grenada, Bahamas, Jamaica and Guyana held bilateral talks with President Xi one by one. In the afternoon, Xi is also scheduled to meet leaders from Surinam and Barbados.

The president also met leaders from Trinidad and Tobago, as well as Antigua and Barbuda on Saturday. He will have met leaders from all the nine Caribbean countries that have diplomatic relations with China before he leaves for his next stop, Costa Rica, on Sunday afternoon.

Experts said the intensive schedule shows how highly China values its relations with the Caribbean region and its desire to deepen bilateral communication and diversify cooperation.

During the meetings on Sunday morning, Xi called Caribbean countries an important force in the international community. Cooperation between China and the region has helped development and benefited peoples on both sides.

He said China is willing to establish and develop a comprehensive and cooperative partnership with countries in the Caribbean.

Caribbean leaders who attended this morning's meetings said that President Xi's visit shows that China attaches great importance to the Caribbean region. They are willing to work together with China to strive to continue to develop relations between them.

Xi arrived in Port of Spain on Friday evening to start his first visit to Latin America and the Caribbean since he assumed the presidency in March. After visiting Costa Rica, he heads to Mexico, prior to a June 7-8 summit with US President Barack Obama in California.

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