09:19 GMT06 April 2020
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    Talks between London and Beijing come as both countries prepare to deepen economic cooperation amid Brexit and the US trade war on China, with No 10 pledging to collaborate on several key projects.

    UK prime minister Boris Johnson held phone talks with Chinese president Xi Jinping on Tuesday to discuss numerous bilateral issues, a government statement revealed.

    The British Prime Minister offered condolences to victims of the coronavirus, with President Xi thanking London for supporting efforts to fight the outbreak, including donations of vital medial supplies to China.

    Both parties agreed on the importance of the UK-China relationship and vowed to work together on a range of issues such as economic cooperation and efforts to fight climate change.

    The talks come ahead of the 2020 UN Climate Change Conference in Glasgow in November, as well as the UN Convention on Biological Diversity Summit in China in October. 

    Both London and Beijing agreed that biodiversity and climate change were "two sides of the same coin", the statement read, adding that they should be addressed in tandem to "protect the planet for future generations".

    The news comes after the announcement of several major projects, including "preliminary discussions" between UK and Chinese officials to build the High Speed 2 (HS2) railway network. China's State Railway Company Group wrote in a letter that it could build the HS2 in just five years for a much lower cost, Building Magazine reported.

    Huawei Technologies is also boosting investment in the UK, namely after launching its 5G Innovation and Experience Centre in London in December last year to collaborate on building 5G ecosystems globally.

    The Chinese telecoms giant also pledged in January to help developers in the UK and Ireland build native apps for the Huawei Mobile Services (HMS) ecosystem, in addition to £20,000 boosts to apps submitted early. 

    The news comes as several US officials, including President Donald Trump, Vice President Mike Pence and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, have threatened to end intelligence sharing with London after the British Prime Minister approved Huawei to build the nation's 5G networks, stating it would also adversely impact future trade talks between London and Washington.



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