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Chinese, Italian leaders mark 50 years of ties
President Xi Jinping shakes hands with his Italian counterpart Sergio Mattarella in Rome, Italy, March 22, 2019. [Photo/Xinhua]
China welcomes all countries, including Italy, to actively participate in its development and realize mutually beneficial cooperation, President Xi Jinping said on Wednesday.

He made the remark in a telephone conversation with his Italian counterpart Sergio Mattarella marking the 50th anniversary of diplomatic relations between China and Italy.

Xi said that the two countries have led by example in how nations with different social systems and cultural backgrounds can develop bilateral relations.

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, people in both countries have joined hands in fighting the virus and set a good example for the international community, Xi said.

He also expressed China's support for Italy to chair the Group of 20 next year, saying that China will stand ready with Italy to promote the G20 in continuing to play an important role in improving global governance and facilitating the recovery of the world economy.

Mattarella said that China's development will provide huge opportunities for cooperation between the European Union and China and his country is willing to actively support and participate in the development of EU-China relations.

The Italian president also said that he cherished his friendship with President Xi and expected to visit China at an early date after the pandemic.

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