Zhang Dejiang’s official position is chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress , roughly the equivalent of a speaker of parliament in other countries. In theory, China’s parliament is the highest state institution, however, it usually just endorses decisions taken by the executive administration and the Communist Party.
This will be the Chinese parliamentary speaker’s second visit in Lithuania after the first visit in 2000, the parliament’s Public Relations Division said.
China is interested in Lithuania’s transport sector, the Klaipėda seaport and free economic zones, while Lithuanian businesses are interested in exports to the China’s rapidly-growing market.
China is the world’s second-largest economy after the United States, growing more than 6 percent last year, with a similar indicator expected this year, as well.
Lithuania fell in China’s disfavor after President Dalia Grybauskaitė met with Tibet’s spiritual leader Dalai Lama in Vilnius in 2013. Negotiations with China on various issued had stalled until Beijing issued a statement in February of 2015, stating its willingness to develop good ties.