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April 27, 2013

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Home » Metro » Education

French president says more youth contacts will boost ties

MORE exchanges among young people will lay a solid foundation for future friendship and cooperation between France and China, said French President Francois Hollande in Shanghai yesterday in a speech to local university students.

Hollande said Shanghai is an ideal example of China's success.

"French people studying or working in Shanghai won't feel it an alien place because Shanghai shares so many things with Paris," Hollande said.

"We expect more French students will come to China and vice versa, which will strengthen friendship between our two countries."

Hollande made his speech at the inauguration ceremony of the SJTU-ParisTech Elite Institute of Technology - the result of an alliance between ParisTech and Shanghai Jiao Tong University.

"Apart from political partnership, we need to collaborate more in areas like economy, technology and education to maintain and grow our friendship," Hollande said.

"We are willing to exchange our experiences of growth with China, and further improve our relationship as young people in our two countries share many common values, such as how to meet the challenges of sustainable development together," he said.

To promote French education, Hollande said France will make its visa application procedures more convenient in China.

Hollande also said France wants to boost collaboration with China in areas such as agriculture, medicine and information technology, in addition to aviation and nuclear energy.

Hollande met with Shanghai Party Secretary Han Zheng yesterday, and visited members of the local French community.

Shanghai was the final leg of Hollande's two-day state visit in China, which made him the first leader of a major Western country to visit China since President Xi Jinping assumed his post last month.

On Thursday, Xi met with Hollande and pledged to push for a "multipolar" world.

During his visit, China signed deals including the purchase of 60 planes from the European consortium Airbus Industrie.


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