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Volume 407: debated on Friday 20 June 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement on relations with China. [120504]

We currently enjoy very good relations with China. These have been built on regular high level visits in both directions, as well as lower level exchanges on many different issues. We look forward to building relations with the new leadership.As part of our efforts to step up our dialogue with China on major international issues the Chinese Foreign Minister, Li Zhaoxing, will visit the UK next week for talks with my right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary and other Government Ministers.We have welcomed China's support in the fight against terrorism. The strength of our relationship allows us to raise directly with the Chinese Government our concerns about human rights in China which we do on a regular basis.