China has signed a deal with France on purchasing 45 Aribus A330 passenger planes, French Prime Minister Manuel Valls announced Tuesday at a joint press conference with visiting Chinese Premier Li Keqiang.
"China is today the most important market for aviation in the world, we can be confident that air transport in China will continue to undergo rapid growth," Airbus CEO Fabrice Bregier said in a statement, hailing the deal, which is among the highlights of the Chinese premier's first official visit to France since he took office.
In talks and later the joint press conference with Valls, Li called for the two sides to expand cooperation in industry, energy and third-party markets.
Li suggested that the two sides deepen industrial cooperation in fields including aviation and space, high-speed railway, steel, nuclear, oil and hydro power while increasing added value and jointly exploring third-party markets.
The Chinese premier also noted that China and France should step up cooperation in such areas as agriculture, food, health, digital economy, ocean and polar region development as well as energy efficiency.
Meanwhile, Li called for more favorable conditions to facilitate trade and investment so as to push for a dynamic balance in bilateral trade.
Li said the two countries should deepen financial cooperation to provide support for exploring third party markets and enhance exchanges and cooperation in supervising their banking sectors.
France is a core member of the European Union (EU) and a partner of special importance for China within the organization, Li noted. "A healthy growth of China-France ties will be exemplary for China-Europe relations."
For his part, Valls said the two countries enjoy fruitful practical cooperation and a broad prospect.
He expressed his hope that France and China could strengthen their economic dialogue and deepen their cooperation in traditional areas including nuclear energy, aviation and space, agriculture and food production while speeding up interaction in such new areas as trilateral cooperation and eco-city building.
Valls called for more two-way investment and exchanges in sectors of culture and tourism.
The French side, he said, appreciated China's actions in tackling climate change and is grateful for its efforts in working with France to prepare for the 2015 Paris climate change conference.
Li, who arrived here Monday from Belgium after meeting with Belgian leaders and attending the 17th China-EU leaders' meeting, is now on an official visit to France.
During his stay, he will also pay a visit to the headquarters of the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development.