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G20 expected to OK anti-graft deal

Updated: 2014-11-14 08:06
By Zhang Yunbi (China Daily)

Xi will follow summit with visits to NZ, Pacific island countries as trade increases

China expects the upcoming G20 Summit to expand anti-corruption teamwork from the Asia-Pacific region to the entire world, with the 15-year-old gathering of the world's most powerful economic players seeking sustained growth for its members.

President Xi Jinping will attend the summit in Brisbane, Australia, which is slated for Saturday and Sunday.

The Group of 20 is made up of 19 of the world's major and emerging economies, plus the European Union. Reports said the summit is expected to sign off on an agreement designed to help members bring fugitives to justice.

Zhang Jun, head of the Foreign Ministry's international economy department, dismissed speculation that China will block the initiative and said China "actually takes an active part in the G20 counter-corruption cooperation".

The Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation member economies decided on Tuesday to set up a cross-border law enforcement network to strengthen anti-corruption cooperation in the region. Zhang said the G20 is expected to take a step forward toward a similar goal.

"China firmly supports the G20's stepping-up of anti-corruption cooperation, such as the retrieval of assets, seizure of fugitives and building a judicial assistance network. G20 members should not provide safe havens for corrupt officials," Zhang said.

Oceanic visit

The progress of free trade talks and China's advancing teamwork with the south Pacific region are expected to highlight Xi's Nov 16-23 trip to Australia, New Zealand and Fiji following his attendance at the G20 summit.

Australia is China's eighth-largest trading partner, with bilateral trade volume topping $130 billion in 2013. China has been Australia's largest trade partner for the past five years.

During his visit, Xi will meet Australian leaders and give a speech to Parliament. He will also meet local officials and attend a meeting with some CEOs from both countries, according to Assistant Foreign Minister Zheng Zeguang.

Government departments and enterprises from both countries will sign some cooperation documents regarding investment, finance, education, polar affairs, energy and minerals as well as infrastructure, Zheng said.

Xi's arrival in New Zealand will get serious attention, as key indicators show that bilateral trade and strategic resonance are building.

China's Ambassador to New Zealand Wang Lutong defined the status quo of bilateral political mutual trust as "unprecedentedly high" in a recent speech.

The China-New Zealand Free Trade Agreement has served as a strong catalyst, and growing trade has exceeded expectations. A five-year plan to double annual bilateral trade was accomplished ahead of schedule this year.

The two sides are expected to sign cooperation documents related to climate change, TV, education, the South Pole, tourism, food safety, finance, forestry and others, he said.

During the trip, Xi will also meet with leaders from eight Pacific island countries that have diplomatic relations with China.

Xinhua contributed to this story.



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