Liu Jianchao Meets with Martin Schulz, Former Head of the German Social Democratic Party (SPD) and President of the Friedrich-Ebert Foundation (FES)
 ( 2024.02.08 )

Beijing, February 6th—Liu Jianchao, Minister of the International Department of the CPC Central Committee (IDCPC), met here today with a delegation led by Martin Schulz, former head of the German Social Democratic Party (SPD), President of the Friedrich-Ebert Foundation (FES), and former President of the European Parliament.

Liu said, since the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Germany 51 years ago, bilateral relations have generally moved forward in the right direction. In recent years, President Xi Jinping has maintained close exchanges with German leaders and reached important consensus on deepening dialogue and cooperation between the two countries in various fields. Currently, the profound changes unseen in a century are unfolding in a complex way. China and Germany, as all-round strategic partners and major countries with global influence, should all the more adhere to the original aspiration of our cooperation, maintain strategic focus, strengthen dialogue and coordination, and inject more stability and certainty into the world. The Chinese side regards Europe as a comprehensive strategic partner, supports the European Union's strategic independence, and hopes to see a prosperous and stable Europe. China-Europe relationship is not targeted at, subjugated to or controlled by any third party. The Chinese side is willing to, together with the European side, enhance strategic mutual trust, promote mutually beneficial cooperation, and contribute wisdom and strength to the joint efforts to respond to global issues and a peaceful settlement of the crises and conflicts.

Calling the SPD an important force in German politics, Liu said the SPD has played an active role in promoting the healthy and stable development of China-Germany relations for years. This year marks the 40th anniversary of the establishment of relations between the CPC and the SPD. We are willing to carry forward the tradition of friendly exchanges between the two Parties and push the relations between the two Parties to a new level. The FES is an important institution under the influence of the SPD. The IDCPC is willing to strengthen exchanges of concepts with the FES, constantly build and expand consensus, expand cooperation areas, and contribute to the development of the relations between the two Parties and the two countries.

Schulz expressed, after the pandemic situation turned for the better, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz was the first leader of a Western country to visit China upon invitation. And Lars Klingbeil, Chairman of the SPD, also visited China. These visits show the great importance that Germany and the SPD attach to China and the CPC. The world today is undergoing many important changes, and there is great uncertainty in future development. The SPD advocates facing up to and recognizing these changes in the world, and resolving differences and conflicts through peaceful and diplomatic means, to realize peaceful coexistence. Europe should enhance its autonomy, work with the world to address issues such as climate change, and jointly safeguard world peace. Acknowledging that Germany and China are both major countries, Schulz said the SPD and the CPC can contribute to this by strengthening dialogue and coordination. The FES is ready to strengthen exchanges and cooperation with the Chinese side, consolidate the foundation of Germany-China relations, and push SPD-CPC relations for further development.

Both sides also exchanged views on international and regional issues such as the Ukraine crisis and the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.

Sun Haiyan, Vice-minister of the IDCPC, Sabine Fandrych, Secretary General of FES, and others were present.