BEIJING - China values Malaysia as a trustworthy friend and an important partner, said Chinese President Xi Jinping when receiving a courtesy call from Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak at the Diaoyutai State Guest House here.
In a meeting of delegates from both countries yesterday, Xi emphasised that China appreciated the friendly ties with Malaysia which began 40 years ago.
"Both sides have to make the effort, seize the opportunity, overcome the challenges and deepen the comprehensive strategic partnership," he said.
Xi expressed hope for cooperation in the areas of connectivity, aerospace, finance and others to be strengthened.
Najib, whose father Tun Abdul Razak Hussein facilitated the start of the relationship between Malaysia and China, hoped both countries would continue to fulfil the vision and promises of their past leaders.
On the missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, Najib promised that Malaysia would work closely with China and other relevant parties on the search until the truth is found.
"This is our responsibility to the passengers' families," he added.
During the meeting, Najib also informed Xi of the release of the Chinese tourist abducted by Filipino gunmen in Sabah last month, and promised that she would be escorted home immediately.
Earlier, Najib paid a courtesy call on Zhang Dejiang, chairman of the standing committee of the Chinese National People's Congress at the Great Hall of the People here.
Today, when Najib arrives at the cavernous Great Hall of the People for the celebration of the 40th anniversary of Malaysia-China diplomatic relations, it is not just national and personal history that will be on his mind.
Named the Malaysia-China Year of Friendly Exchanges, 2014 has also subjected those ties to a tremendous ongoing test in the form of the MH370 incident.
At the same time, this year offers many reasons for Malaysia and China to be optimistic about how much more they can work and benefit together.