The Chinese government says it wants to push ahead with discussions on a free trade agreement with Switzerland.
China’s Vice Premier, Li Keqiang, made the comment during talks in Bern with Swiss President Doris Leuthard and Foreign Minister Micheline Calmy-Rey.
Li said a meeting next month between Swiss and Chinese officials to prepare a joint feasibility study was a “concrete step against protectionism”.
The case of the two ethnic Uighurs held in Guantánamo whom Switzerland is considering sheltering did not figure in Tuesday’s talks, the Swiss government said.
China is opposed to the move, claiming that the two Uighurs are terrorists, undermining Chinese rule in their province.
Li’s visit also opened celebrations for the 60th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Switzerland and China.
swissinfo.ch and agencies