TASHKENT, Sept. 18 (Xinhua) -- China's top legislator Wu Bangguo's visit to Uzbekistan will push forward the friendly cooperative partnership between the two countries, the Chinese ambassador says.
Wu's upcoming visit, coinciding with the 20th anniversary of Uzbekistan's Independence, will also give a strong impetus to regional security and stability and common development, and help promote lasting peace and common prosperity in the region, ambassador Zhang Xiao said in a recent interview with Xinhua.
Zhang said the visit will enhance the traditional friendship between the two peoples and will also deepen cooperation and exchanges between the legislative bodies of the two countries.
Bilateral relations have entered a new phase of development in recent years, as mutual political trust is deepening and the two countries have offered mutual support on issues concerning their respective major interests, Zhang said.
Current trends show that their bilateral ties will further move to a higher stage, as both countries are facing new global and regional challenges and threats and their strategic goals are highly identical, the ambassador said.
Bilateral cooperation, particularly in the areas of trade, culture and security, has been fruitful since the establishment of the China-Uzbekistan friendly cooperative partnership in 2004, as China has become the third largest trading partner of the Central Asian country and its biggest investor, with two-way trade standing at 2.48 billion U.S. dollars last year.
As members of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), the two countries have made efforts to maintain regional peace and push forward the process of regional integration, Zhang said, adding that they have also worked together with other SCO members to contribute to the healthy and stable development of the SCO.
Wu Bangguo, chairman of the Standing Committee of China's National People's Congress (NPC), is currently on a four-nation tour which has already taken him to Russia and Belarus. Wu will also visit Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan.