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Friday, November 18, 2016, 11:38

Xi: China-Ecuador on path to brotherhood ties

By An Baijie in Quito
Xi: China-Ecuador on path to brotherhood ties
Chinese President Xi Jinping (Left) and Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa applaud after a joint press conference at Carondelet presidential palace in Quito, on Nov 17, 2016. ( JUAN CEVALLOS / AFP)

China's help to Ecuador will have no additional conditions as the two countries are making joint efforts to establish brotherhood ties, President Xi Jinping said on Thursday.

Xi made the remarks while meeting with Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa in Quito during his historic state visit to the South American country . He is the first Chinese president to visit Ecuador since diplomatic relations were established between the two countries in 1980.

I came here with the deep friendship of Chinese people and the good wishes of developing bilateral ties

President Xi Jinping

"I saw that the (Ecuadorian) people were quite friendly along the street," Xi said, adding that China aims to provide practical help for Ecuadorian people.

"I came here with the deep friendship of Chinese people and the good wishes of developing bilateral ties," Xi said in a speech delivered at the Quito airport, where President Correa hosted a grand welcome ceremony for the Chinese delegation.

During the meeting, the two countries signed a number of cooperative documents covering areas including infrastructure, finance and investment.

Correa expressed gratitude for China's financial support in the country's infrastructure, saying that China has financed Ecuador's seven hydropower plants.

"With the hydropower plants, Ecuador has become one of the world's most efficient country in the use of clean energy," he said, adding that as many as 90 percent of the country's power is from renewable energy including hydropower.

Strategic partnership

In a speech delivered at the airport after arrival, the top Chinese leader said Ecuador is an important country in Latin America, adding that the two nations have enjoyed long-running friendship while recent years have seen substantial development of their bilateral ties and ever enhancing political mutual trust.

In his speech to welcome Xi at the airport, Correa appreciated China's support for his country's economic and social development.

Ecuador hopes Xi's "historic" visit leads to strengthening strategic ties, Ecuadorian Foreign Minister Guillaume Long told Xinhua ahead of the visit, adding that "the ties with China in recent years have been very fruitful, very significant."

In 2015, during his second China visit, Correa and Xi agreed to elevate bilateral ties to the level of a strategic partnership.

"China views and grows its relations with Ecuador from a strategic and long-term perspective," President Xi said in a signed article on Ecuador's leading newspaper El Telegrafo on Wednesday, one day before his visit.

Despite the long distance, China has become Ecuador's third largest trading partner, with two-way trade reaching US$4.1 billion in 2015, quadrupling in just 10 years.

Besides Ecuador, the week-long tour will also take him to Peru and Chile. In Peru, Xi will attend the 24th Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Economic Leaders' Meeting from Nov. 19 to 20 in the capital city of Lima, adds Xinhua from Quito.

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