China's top political advisor Jia Qinglin on Wednesday called to boost cultural exchanges between China and Greece in a meeting with Stavros Arnaoutakis, governor of the Greek province of Crete.
Jia, chairman of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) National Committee, thanked Arnaoutakis for help of the Greek people and government, and the provincial government of Crete in particular, in evacuating Chinese nationals from Libya early this year.
Jia said the rescue operation showed the deep friendship between the Greek and Chinese people.
He urged the two countries to enhance cultural exchanges in the future, so as to further boost understandings between the Eastern and the Western civilizations, and contribute to world peace.
He said the Chinese government is willing to support mutually beneficial collaborations between Crete and Chinese provinces and cities in fields such as economy and trade, tourism, and agriculture, adding that he believed Crete would play an important role in this regard.
Arnaoutakis, for his part, said the Cretans welcome Jia's visit, which would boost exchanges and cooperation between China and Greece, as well as between local governments of the two nations.
The governor said under the current situation, the two countries should cooperate more closely to face the challenges together, and contribute to world peace and prosperity.
Jia arrived in Athens on Sunday for a 5-day visit to the debt-ridden country. Greece is the first stop of Jia's three-nation tour to Europe, which will also take him to the Netherlands and Germany.