On April 17, 2017 local time, Vice Premier Zhang Gaoli met with President Bujar Nisani of Albania in Tirana when visiting Albania upon invitation.
Zhang Gaoli first conveyed the warm greetings and best wishes from President Xi Jinping. Zhang Gaoli said that China and Albania enjoy traditional friendship, and Albania is one of the first countries establishing diplomatic relations with the People's Republic of China. In recent years, China-Albania relations have maintained steady and healthy development. The two countries boast frequent high-level exchanges, constantly deep political mutual trust and continuously further cooperation in economy, trade, investment, people-to-people and cultural engagement and other areas. China is satisfied with the sound development momentum of bilateral relations, and is willing to work with Albania to further consolidate bilateral traditional friendship, deepen practical cooperation between the two countries, respect and accommodate each other's core interests and major concerns, in a bid to promote greater development of bilateral relations.
Zhang Gaoli said that the "Belt and Road" Initiative proposed by President Xi Jinping features openness and inclusiveness and adheres to principles of wide consultation, joint contribution and shared benefits. Located in both the land and sea transport passageways in southeast Europe, Albania embraces obvious location advantages and serves as an important country along the "Belt and Road". Under the framework of the "Belt and Road" construction and the "16+1 Cooperation", China is willing to combine Albania's strengths and its practical needs to advance bilateral practical cooperation in major fields such as transportation infrastructure, production capacity, tourism and agriculture, speed up the negotiation and signing of intergovernmental memorandum of understanding on jointly pushing forward the "Belt and Road" construction, further enhance planning and guidance of bilateral practical cooperation, and strive for more concrete achievements, so as to benefit both countries and the two peoples.
Bujar Nishani asked Zhang Gaoli to convey his sincere greetings and best wishes to President Xi Jinping. He said that the sound bilateral relationship is of unique significance to Albania. Albania appreciates China's great development achievements and its important role in international affairs, hoping China will contribute more to the global economy as well as prosperity and development in the Balkan region. Albania firmly pursues amity towards China, adheres to one-China policy, and is willing to join hands with China to further strengthen high-level contacts and conduct exchanges and cooperation in all fields, so as to elevate bilateral relationship into new highs.
On the same day, Zhang Gaoli also held talks with Prime Minister Edi Rama of Albania. Zhang Gaoli conveyed Premier Li Keqiang's warm greetings and best wishes. He said that China is willing to work with Albania to strengthen strategic docking and practical cooperation in various areas, conduct in-depth discussion on cooperation ideas, environment, mechanism, method, projects, effects and other aspects, find out the breakthrough points and expand converging point of common interests to achieve common development and prosperity. We need to continuously expand the scale of bilateral trade and two-way investment. China is willing to further expand the imports of advantageous products from Albania, continue to encourage Chinese enterprises to scale up investments in Albania, actively participate in and follow up the major infrastructure and energy projects being planned and implemented by Albania covering roads, hydropower station, and economic development zones, and strive to achieve breakthroughs in major projects cooperation. The two sides should enhance people-to-people and cultural exchanges, actively promote cooperation in film and television, education, tourism and other areas, and consolidate the public opinion foundation of bilateral relations.
Zhang Gaoli pointed out that China appreciates Albania's consistent support for the "16+1 Cooperation". China welcomes and expects Albanian leaders' future attendance at the leaders' meeting and activities in various areas under the "16+1 Cooperation" framework. China is willing to, together with all parties, earnestly implement the results of the 5th Summit of China and Central and Eastern European countries (CEEC) in Riga, deepen mechanism construction in such fields as economy, trade, education, science, technology, culture, forestry, agriculture and local areas, expand cooperation in logistics, e-commerce, small and medium-sized enterprises and environmental protection, foster and implement major cooperation projects, so as to let the "16 + 1 Cooperation" better benefit the people of China and the CEEC.
Edi Rama asked Zhang Gaoli to convey his sincere greetings and best wishes to Premier Li Keqiang. He said that Albania and China enjoy profound traditional friendship. Vice Premier Zhang Gaoli's visit will play an important role in promoting the future development of bilateral relations. Albania is looking forward to carrying out cooperation with China and welcomes Chinese enterprises to invest and establish business in the country. It is hoped that the two sides, under the framework of the "Belt and Road" construction and the "16 + 1 Cooperation", could find a number of projects that can yield results as soon as possible, and truly implement bilateral practical cooperation.