Athens, June 30, 2016/Independent Balkan News Agency
By Spiros Sideris
Small Government participation – Chinese express dissatisfaction and concern
With a charter flight starts on Friday afternoon the official visit of Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras to China, who will be accompanied by the ministers of Foreign Affairs – Nikos Kotzias, Economy – Giorgos Stathakis, Culture – Aristides Baltas, Deputy Foreign Minister – Dimitris Mardas, Government spokeswoman Olga Gerovasili and the General Secretary of the Foreign Ministry – Giorgos Tsipras.
In the Greek delegation will also participate Greek businessmen, who will attend the two greek-chinese forum to be held in Beijing and Shanghai.
The Prime Minister’s program is as follows:
On Saturday July 2 he will give a television interview on Chinese television CCTV and later he will host the Greek businessmen who participate in the business delegation.
On Sunday July 3rd Alexis Tsipras will meet with Wanda Group Chairman Mr Wang Jianlin. Then he will visit the Technological Park of HUAWEI where he will attend a dinner, followed by a visit of The Great Wall.
On Monday, July 4, the Greek and Chinese Premier will participate in the Hellenic-Chinese Business Forum.
Then the official welcoming ceremony will take place by the Chinese leadership, followed by the meeting of Greek Prime Minister with his Chinese counterpart Li Keqiang, the official talks of the two delegations, the ceremony of signature of bilateral agreements and after that a working dinner.
On Tuesday, July 5, the Greek delegation with the Greek Prime Minister will visit the Forbidden City, the unveiling of the sign of the joint artifacts maintenance and restoration workshop between Museum of the Forbidden City and Institute of Science & Technology of Heraklion.
In the afternoon of the same day The Greek PM will attend a wreath laying ceremony in the Monument of the People’s heroes Tien An Men Square, he will meet with the President of P.R. China Xi Jinping and immediately after with the Chairman of Standing Committee of National People’s Congress Zhang Dejiang. Following that, the delegation will travel to Shanghai.
On Wednesday, July 6, the Greek Prime Minister will have meetings with COSCO officials, ZTE CEO Hou Weigui the ZTE R & D Centre, Mayor of Shanghai Yang Xiong and Shanghai Party Secretary Han Zheng, followed by a meeting with businessmen who are operating in both countries.
The visit of the Greek Prime Minister is considered extremely important for the Greek economy, as the deepening of economic relations between the two countries will give a boost to growth and the attempt to attract investments in Greece.
However, according to information of IBNA, Chinese officials have expressed their concern for the small size of the government delegation, as well as the delay of the Greek authorities in clarifying Alexis Tsipras’ visit schedule in Beijing and Shanghai, which caused unfavourable comments and concerns regarding the cooperation capabilities with the Greek government.
Of course it is not the first time that the phenomenon of the Greek Prime Minister’s contacts at major trips abroad be scheduled at the last possible moment. This is something the Greek government must seriously look into if it really wants to attract investors and partners in an effort to leave recession behind and move to a development period.