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China, Mexico Promise Expanded Ties as Xi Visits

China and Mexico promised greater bilateral cooperation and expanded commercial ties, as Chinese President Xi Jinping started a three-day visit to the Latin American country.

After meeting Tuesday with his Mexican counterpart Enrique Pena Nieto, President Xi said the two countries signed a wide-range of cooperation agreements.

"At the moment, government officials from both governments and our scientific and investigation institutions have signed various accords for cooperation in the areas of energy, mining, construction and infrastructure, emerging industries and academic exchange."

The two countries reached agreements on on access for Mexican pork and tequila to the Chinese market. Mr. Xi also said China plans to soon purchase $1 billion worth of Mexican goods, but did not elaborate.

Mexico is trying to narrow its huge trade deficit with China. In 2012, Mexico imported $57 billion in Chinese goods, while only exporting $5.7 billion to China.

The visit was partly aimed at restoring Mexico-China ties that were strained during the administration of former Mexican President Felipe Calderon, who welcomed Tibet's exiled spiritial leader, the Dalai Lama in 2011.

President Pena Nieto said he was hopeful a "new phase of cooperation" could be brought on by the visit of Mr. Xi, who in turn said that he is confident the two countries will begin a "new stage of development."

Mr. Xi on Wednesday addresses Mexican lawmakers and meets with leaders in Mexico City, before heading to the ancient Maya pyramids in Chichen Itza. His tour of Latin America already includes stops in Costa Rica and Trinidad and Tobago.

On Friday and Saturday, he will meet with U.S. President Barack Obama at an informal summit in the western state of California.