Deputy foreign minister Spyros Kouvelis arrived in Beijing on Sunday for the inauguration of an air flight between Athens and Beijing by Air China and the signing of a Joint Agreement for mutual visa facilitation.
On Monday, Kouvelis will have bilateral talks with the Chinese Deputy Foreign Minister and will sign the Joint Statement on visa facilitation for the citizens of the two countries. The joint Greek-Chinese accord arises from the current agreement between the European Union and China (ADS) for the facilitation of the tourist flow from China to the EU. 

The Joint Agreement comes as a solid exemplification of the wish between countries to further strengthening their Comprehensive Strategic Partnership and Cooperation Agreement dated October 4, 2010 between Greek prime minister George Papandreou and Chinese foreign minister Wen Jiabao following the Chinese Prime Minister’s visit to Greece.

The signing of the Joint Agreement  paves the way for furthering cooperation in the fields of the economy, entrepreneurship and outward-looking expansion, tourism, cultural agreement and scientific cooperation within the framework of the October 4 Joint Declaration.

The Joint Declaration aims at the facilitation and expedition of the bureaucratic processing of visa applications, the limitation of paperwork needed, the introduction of flexibility in the acceptance in the acceptance of application, the limitation in the submission of documentation.

On Wednesday, Kouvelis will be on the new flight from Beijing to Athens and will participate in the welcome reception of the flight organized by the Chinese Embassy in Athens and Athens International Airport.
Later Wednesday, Kouvelis will receive an eight-member mission from the Pan-Chinese Delegation of Journalists who will be visiting Greece to be briefed on the recent evacuation of 13,500 Chinese citizens from Libya.
Kouvelis will further meet with the Vice-President of the CNTA, Du Jiang.