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China wants financial cooperation as UK seeks to boost trade

Vice Premier Ma is holding talks with UK Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond, with the two expected to sign more than £1b of trade and investment deals

Gulf News

Sydney: China wants to deepen financial and investment links with the UK as Britain seeks to boost two-way trade once it leaves the European Union.

Vice Premier Ma Kai said both countries should also push cooperation to a new level in areas including nuclear-power generation, manufacturing, high-speed rail, high-end manufacturing, and trade and investment liberalisation.

“The United Kingdom has obvious financial advantages and its financial development is robust,” Ma said at the ninth annual UK-China Economic and Financial Dialogue in Beijing on Saturday. “Both sides have great potential for cooperation. Make financial cooperation a new bright spot in the ‘golden age’ of Chinese-British relations.”

Ma is holding talks with UK Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond, with the two expected to sign more than £1 billion (Dh4.89 billion, $1.3 billion) of trade and investment deals. China currently buys £16.8 billion a year of British exports. That compares with the £230 billion of goods and services Britain sells to the EU.

“We both face challenges to ensure that our economies are fit for the future and can capitalise on the opportunities of the 21st century,” Hammond said. “Deepened cooperation between our two countries will help both sides as we face these challenges.”

Hammond is in China for two days of talks, accompanied on the visit by Business Secretary Greg Clark, Governor of the Bank of England Mark Carney, and London Stock Exchange Chief Executive Officer Nikhil Rathi, as well as several junior ministers and a wider business delegation.

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