BEIJING, Feb. 8 (Xinhua) -- Chinese President Xi Jinping and Portuguese President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa on Friday exchanged congratulations on the 40th anniversary of the establishment of China-Portugal diplomatic relations.
China and Portugal enjoy a long history of friendship, Xi said in his congratulatory message, adding that in the past four decades, the two countries, with the spirits of mutual respect, equality, mutual benefits and win-win, have promoted healthy and steady development of bilateral ties.
In 1999, China and Portugal properly resolved the question of Macao, setting a fine example for other nations in tackling issues left over from history through friendly negotiations, he said.
Since a comprehensive strategic partnership was established in 2005, China and Portugal have witnessed frequent high-level exchanges, deepening political mutual trust as well as remarkable achievements of mutual beneficial cooperation in various areas, Xi added.
Citing his successful visit to Portugal in early December last year, Xi said he and President Rebelo de Sousa held deep and friendly talks during the visit, jointly outlining the new blueprint of the China-Portugal relations.
Xi said he highly values the development of the two countries' ties. By taking the 40th anniversary of the establishment of China-Portugal diplomatic ties as a new starting point, he added that he is willing to work together with Rebelo de Sousa to bring the two countries' comprehensive strategic partnership to a higher level to better benefit the two countries and their people.
Noting the harmonious co-existence between Portugal and China, Rebelo de Sousa said the two countries always seek common ground while putting aside differences and pursue mutual benefits and win-win results.
With equal consultations, the two sides reached consensus and made the smooth handover of Macao and its government transfer realized, providing a useful reference for the international community, he said.
Portugal is very proud of the long-term and peaceful relations with China, Rebelo de Sousa said, adding that he believes the two countries will make unremitting efforts with firm determination and enthusiasm to promote their long-term steady friendship to continuously move forward.
On Friday, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa also exchanged congratulation messages.
Portugal is an important partner of China in the European Union (EU), Li said in the message, noting that China praises Portugal's active participation in the construction of China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative.
Li said China, with the opportunity of the 40th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties, is willing to jointly work with Portugal to promote the two countries' bilateral ties and practical cooperation in all fields to move forward.
For his part, Costa said the Portuguese side is ready to make joint efforts with China to continuously deepen the two countries' comprehensive strategic partnership to seek more well-beings for the two peoples and make greater contributions to the development of globalization in the current era.