China silent about Portugual's debt

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The Independent Online

President Hu Jintao remained silent on China's stance on Portuguese debt yesterday, dashing hopes of a promise to invest in the southern European country's bonds.

"We are willing to take concrete measures to help Portugal to cope with the global financial crisis," he said after a meeting with Prime Minister Jose Socrates in Lisbon. Mr Hu did not elaborate on the measures, however.

Last month, the Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao promised to support Greek bonds when the country returns to the markets.

Although Lisbon continues to sell its bonds on the financial markets, Portugal, which is working to slash its budget deficit, had hoped to win similar backing for its debt.