In the wake of Covid-19 pandemic, the Greek government continues with unfaltering commitment to enhance cooperation with China, Greece's Minister of Development and Investments Adonis Georgiadis said on Thursday.
"We continue even faster and stronger than before to make our ties stronger," the minister said while addressing an online investment forum.
The new unprecedented challenge posed by the pandemic can either lead to conflicts or strengthen the will of the people and nations to move forward, and Greece has chosen to move forward, Georgiadis said.
The message the Greek government aims to convey is that investments will continue, he stressed.
"We are very happy with the Chinese presence in Greece, very proud of our cooperation in Piraeus port. We want to go forward with the master plan" of the upgrade of Greece's largest harbor, said the minister.
The port is considered a flagship successful project under the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) launched in 2013.
China's Cosco Shipping acquired a majority stake in Piraeus Port Authority SA in 2016 following an international tender, while its subsidiary Piraeus Container Terminal SA has operated the port's container segment over the past decade, with both posting impressive results.
Greece is one of China's real friends, Georgiadis said, as he invited Chinese investors as well as tourists to his country.
"In this global crisis of the novel coronavirus, we choose as our common response the further strengthening of Greek-Chinese relations and bilateral cooperation, especially in economy and investments. This is the safest way to overcome the crisis as quickly as possible," said the Greek minister.
China and Greece are important BRI partners. After the pandemic, Sino-Greek relationship is bound to become stronger, Zhang Qiyue, Chinese Ambassador to Greece, told the forum.
The two sides have a very strong desire to further strengthen cooperation to bring better results to benefit the peoples of Greece and China, she said.
"This is not the time to stay separate from each other," she stressed, expressing confidence that "bilateral relations will come into full bloom to benefit our two peoples."