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China “long term investor in Greece’- Premier
June 20, 2014, 8:15 am

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang with his Greek counterpart Antonis Samaras at a joint press conference on 19 June 2014 in Athens, Greece [AP]

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang with his Greek counterpart Antonis Samaras at a joint press conference on 19 June 2014 in Athens, Greece [AP]

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang has told his host and Greek counterpart that China is “a responsible and long-term investor of Greek national bonds”, state media reported.

“I have expressed my will to [Greek Prime Minister Antonis] Samaras that when Greece will issue new Greek bonds, China will continue being a long-term and responsible investor,” said Li.

In his maiden state visit to Greece since he assumed office in 2013, Li held talks with his Greek counterpart Antonis Samaras on Thursday in Athens.

Samaras said Athens is keen on joint projects with China in such fields as port, railway and shipping even as the economy struggles to stabilise this year after a six-year recession. Greece’s jobless rate dipped to 26.7 per cent in January.

China has helped Greece tide over its debt crisis and further expansion of cooperation between the two countries will benefit themselves and the Europe as well, Samaras said.

The cash-strapped Greek economy is struggling to revive growth and is wooing Chinese investment in lieu of being a gateway to Europe for China.

The two countries signed trade and investment deals worth over $5 billion during Li’s visit.

The Greek Prime Minister also vowed to make the Piraeus port a transit center for regional trade and a gateway for Chinese commodities in Europe.

The Piraeus port, the largest in Greece, is jointly operated by China’s state-owned shipping giant COSCO and the Greek port authority under a 35-year lease signed in 2009.

The Chinese Premier also proposed holding a Sino-Greek maritime cooperation year in 2015.

 

TBP and Agencies

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