(Xinhua) Chinese President Xi Jinping will pay a state visit to the United Kingdom next week, a foreign ministry spokesman said on Tuesday.
President Xi will make the visit at the invitation of British Queen Elizabeth II from Oct. 19 to 23, according to spokesman Lu Kang.
Chinese President Xi Jinping on March this year told visiting Britain's Prince William that he was looking forward to visiting the United Kingdom later this year at the invitation of Queen Elizabeth II.
"I look forward to meeting British leaders during the visit to jointly plan out the future of China-UK relations," Xi told the prince after being handed the invitation by the prince during a meeting at the Great Hall of the People.
China, Britain to achieve rich results in Xi's visit
(Xinhua) China and Britain are expected to make progress on trade and economic cooperation during President Xi Jinping's upcoming visit, including deals on energy, finance, real estate, medical treatment and automobiles.
"The deals between governments, financial institutes and companies, demonstrated the character of trade cooperation and its future direction," said Assistant Minister of Commerce Zhang Ji at a press briefing on Tuesday afternoon.
Britain is China's second largest trading partner, second largest origin of actual investment and investment destination within the European Union, while China ranks as Britain's fourth largest trading partner.
Trade in 2014 reached 80.9 billion U.S. dollars, up 15.3 percent year on year. Britain is also the EU country with fastest-growing Chinese investment. More than 500 Chinese companies have invested in Britain.
"Better trade relations between China and Britain are important for our relations," Zhang said.
He said the two countries should consolidate traditional trade and look for new opportunities, strengthening cooperation on investment and big projects, such as high-speed rail and nuclear power.
The two countries could make full use of their respective advantages, such as China's equipment manufacturing and funds, and Britain's technology, management and financial services, to explore markets in third countries and build a long-term cooperation mechanism, Zhang added.
Xi's state visit from Oct. 19 to 23, the first by a Chinese president for ten years, will include stays in London and Manchester.
According to Vice Foreign Minister Wang Chao, Xi will be welcomed by the Queen Elizabeth II, review the royal horse guards, attend an unofficial luncheon and a welcoming banquet, hold talks with Prime Minister David Cameron, meet leaders of opposition parties, and address a banquet hosted by Lord Mayor of the City of London. He will meet and talk with members of the royal family during stay in London.
In Manchester, he will attend a banquet and visit research projects and local businesses.
Facing the complicated international situation and prominent global challenges, corporation between China, Britain and the rest of the EU will help maintain world economic growth, cope with challenges, and promote reforms on international economic and political governance systems.
"China maintains good relations with both Britain and the EU. China supports EU integration and is willing to see Europe play a bigger role in international affairs as a unit," Wang said.
Zhang said China hoped Britain could continue to play a positive role in the EU to promote export of high-tech products to China, and restraint of use of trade remedy measures.
He also called for an early signing of the China-EU investment agreement and an early start of feasibility research on a China-EU free trade area.