Angela Merkel meets with President Hu Jintao in Beijing

German Chancellor Angela Merkel met Friday with Chinese President Hu Jintao in Beijing, then left for Canton to participate in an economic forum.

Hu noted that Ms. Merkel and Mr. Wen had “reached consensus on many issues,” while Premier Wen Jiabao said that China could become more involved in helping Europe overcome the crisis of debt.

When she arrived in Beijing Thursday morning, the German chancellor had tried to reassure her Chinese hosts on the viability of the euro and the ability of Europe to overcome this crisis.

She also called for better access to Chinese market for German companies, and strengthening the “strategic partnership” between the two largest exporters in the world.

Ms. Merkel said she does not avoid the human rights during her visit to China and stressed the importance of freedom of expression and freedom on the internet at a press conference with Mr. Wen Thursday night.

The Chinese premier for his part stressed “urgency” for Europe to resolve the debt crisis and said China was considering an “increased participation” in the European Financial Stability Fund (EFSF), and Mechanism European Stability (MES).

By late morning Friday, Angela Merkel has left Beijing to Guangzhou where she was to visit a German company before participating in the afternoon at an economic forum bringing together German and Chinese entrepreneurs in the presence of Mr. Wen Jiabao.

Saturday the Chancellor will meet the Catholic Bishop of Canton, Gan Junqiu, before returning to Germany.

In the great metropolis of the south, she had requested a meeting with journalists from the Nanfang group, known for their reformist positions, but was refused by the Chinese authorities, according to a source within the German delegation.

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