Vīķe-Freiberga to visit China

Latvian President Vaira Vīķe-Freiberga plans to visit the People’s Republic of China the week of April 11-18, the president’s press office has announced. Details of the trip have not been revealed, but the president expects to discuss them in a press conference scheduled April 6.

Latvia and China established full diplomatic relations in 1991. China opened an embassy in Rīga in 1994, while Latvia opened its embassy in Beijing in 1998. Latvia’s current ambassador in China is Einars Semanis. China’s ambassador is Ji Yanchi.

Chinese President Jiang Zemin visited Latvia in June 2002.

China was among the first to recognize and establish diplomatic relations with Latvia after the latter regained independence in 1991, according to the Latvian Foreign Ministry. China never recognized the incorporation of Latvia into the Soviet Union.

Latvia does not have formal diplomatic relations with Taiwan, or the Republic of China, but instead “substantive relations” in economic and cultural affairs exist between the two nations, according to Taiwan’s Government Information Office.

Andris Straumanis is a special correspondent for and a co-founder of Latvians Online. From 2000–2012 he was editor of the website.

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