Fourteen bilateral agreements were signed yesterday, between Greece and China during a visit to Athens by China's vice-premier Zhang Dejiang and members of the Chinese Council of ministers.
The Chinese vice-premier is on a three-day visit, at the invitation of Greek Vice-Premier Theodoros Pangalos. The two vice-premiers and their delegations met on Tuesday morning for talks which led to the signing of the 14 agreements involving the shipping sector, transport, tourism and telecoms, as well as Greek exports of olive oil to China.
During the meeting with Pangalos, Zhang expressed China's support for the Greek government and its efforts to overcome the economic crisis, saying that there was "mutual desire by Athens and Beijing to strengthen beneficial cooperation in order to deal with the economic crisis."
Later, Zhang Dejiang, was received by Hellenic Republic President Karolos Papoulias and attended a dinner hosted by Prime Minister George Papandreou.
One of the agreements signed yesterday was a Memorandum of Understanding between the two countries in the field of shipping, which provides for favourable chartering rates for Greek vessels.
Seven other agreements were signed between COSCO and Greek ship-owners, involving the construction of cargo ships at the Chinese company’s shipyards.
In the telecoms sector, Hellenic Telecommunications Organisation (OTE) signed an agreement with Huawei Technologies, while China's BCEGI and Helios Plaza signed an agreement for the construction of a hotel and shopping complex, in Piraeus.
Kathimerini daily: China agrees to more Greek deals
See also Greek News Agenda (20.5.2010): Piraeus Port: China’s gateway to Europe