China and Paris sign big bucks business deals

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China and Paris sign big bucks business deals

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When you pay someone a visit in their home it is good practice to offer them a gift.

And Chinese President Hu Jintao has followed form,
by indulging in a multi-billion euro business deal bonanza with the French.

In Paris for a three-day state visit, the Chinese leader has signed deals ranging from 102 planes from Airbus to telecoms and nuclear energy investments.

China says it plans to double the value of its annual imports from France to 56 billion euros over the next five years.

Whether this will be enough to head off President Nicolas Sarkozy’s plan to discuss trade imbalances and currency reform during France’s upcoming presidency of the G20 remains to be seen.

Not everyone has welcomed the Chinese to Paris with open arms.

Activists claim Beijing’s record on human rights is being ignored in the rush to sign lucrative deals.

Unusually, no joint press conference is planned, so Western journalists will not get the chance to question the Chinese leader on issues like the treatment of dissidents and Tibet.