President Pompidou, of France, and his Foreign Minister, M. Michel Jobert, let Paris on Monday?
President Pompidou, of France, and his Foreign Minister, M. Michel Jobert, let Paris on Monday (10 Sept.) for a week-long visit to the People's Republic of China. During their stay, the French leaders will have talks with Chairman Mao Tse-tung and Premier Chou En-lai.
French officials see the visit as something quite different to President Nixon's dramatic visit to Peking last year. That they regard as a coup. President Pompidou's visit is, on the other hand, the culmination of almost a decade of slowly improving Sino-French relations. Diplomatic relations between the two countries were established in 1964.
Observers feel President Pompidou will attempt to obtain a greater share of trade with China, 80 per cent of which is conducted with non-Communist nations. France wold like to expand exports of industrial and chemical products, machinery, cars, aircraft and tractors. It is hoped China will buy two Concordes and the President had originally intended to fly to Peking in one of the supersonic aircraft. However, suitable landing facilities were not available.
President Pompidou was due to arrive in Peking on Tuesday (11 Sept.) after a stop-over in Islamabad, Pakistan.