BEIJING, July 12 (Xinhua) -- Officials and business people from China and Latvia exchanged views at an economic forum for entrepreneurs here Monday, looking for new ways to boost Sino-Latvia trade and widen bilateral economic cooperation.
The forum, jointly sponsored by the Chinese Ministry of Commerce and the Latvia Ministry of Economics, attracted more than 80 elite entrepreneurs from some 50 major companies in the two countries.
Delivering a speech at the forum, Chen Deming, Chinese Minister of Commerce, said that the world economy had maintained the momentum toward recovery in spite of many "uncertain and unstable" factors, such as a developing sovereign debt crisis in Europe.
Chen said a full recovery of the world economy needed concerted efforts of all countries and China was willing to work with Latvia and the international community to coordinate their macro economic policies, fight against trade protectionism and contribute to the world recovery.
Artis Kampars, Latvia's Minister of Economics, echoed the Chinese minister's call for Sino-Latvia trade expansion in his speech at the forum, saying Latvia attached great importance to developing trade with China.
In recent years, Latvia and China have expanded their economic and trade cooperation in more fields and in greater volume with frequent exchanges between the two countries' senior officials and entrepreneurs, Kampars noted.
"Chinese companies are welcome to invest in Latvia," Kampars said, adding both countries have great cooperative potential in fields such as transportation, logistics, food production, banking, finance, tourism, chemical and pharmaceutical products.
According to statistics from the Chinese Ministry of Commerce, the China-Latvia trade was 480 million U.S. dollars last year, sharply down by 44.8 percent from a year earlier due to the global financial crisis.
However, Sino-Latvia trade has rebounded by 68 percent to 280 million U.S. dollars during the January-May period this year, the Chinese ministry's statistics revealed.
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