Prince William presented China's president with an invitation from the queen to visit Britain this year, as he began the first official visit to mainland China ever by a senior British royal in a generation. President Xi Jinping told the prince that he thanked Queen Elizabeth II for the invitation. “I look forward to meeting her majesty and other British leaders during the visit and to jointly plan out the future of Sino-British relations,” Xi said during the meeting in the Great Hall of the People. “The British royal family has great influence, not just in Britain but across the world.”
William told Xi and the rest of the Chinese delegation, including Yang Jiechi, the government’s senior foreign policy adviser and Foreign Minister Wang Yi, that he is looking forward to strengthening relations between the countries. “I’m particularly interested in the young people and seeing how the next generation develops and is aware of the world as it is,” he added.
Zhao Chen, 14, who is visually impaired and undergone six operations to his eyes, and wants to be a tenor, told the prince: “My dream is to go to your palace to sing opera.” The prince replied: “Well, you have met the right man. We might be able to arrange something.”