China Myanmar relations
Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi (L) shakes hands with Myanmar Foreign Minister Aung San Suu Kyi (R) after a joint press conference in the Ministry of Foreign Affair at Naypyitaw Soe Zeya Tun/Reuters

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi is on a two-day visit to Myanmar, promising support for the newly-formed government led by Aung San Suu Kyi. Wang is the first top-level foreign dignitary to visit the country following the official takeover by the National League for Democracy (NLD).

The Chinese diplomat held talks with Suu Kyi, who led the country through a landmark transition to democracy, sowing seeds for bilateral relations between the neighbours.

"China will not interfere in internal affairs but we strongly support the right choice of the Myanmar people. We appreciate our long relations. We will not change that attitude even though the government has changed," said the Chinese foreign minister during a joint press conference with Suu Kyi in capital Naypyidaw.

"There is huge potential and space in the China-Myanmar economic cooperation and it's inevitable that we'd run into some problems in the cooperative process," he added during the 20-minute briefing.

One of the key issues between the two countries remains a $3.6bn-worth (£2.55bn) dam project, which was halted by the military-backed Myanmar government in 2011. China is keen to resume work for the Beijing-invested Myitsone hydropower project.

However, Suu Kyi clarified the two leaders did not talk about the project as this was Wang's first visit since the takeover.

"The Chinese foreign minister came to congratulate our new government. There was a mention of their projects but we did not discuss anything at all. I have not even read the contract, so it is difficult to show it to the people. We did not discuss anything particular in detail," she said.

China continues to be one of the key trading partners of Myanmar despite former president Thein Sein's decision to suspend the dam venture. Beijing — one of the few allies that was in close cooperation with Myanmar's junta-backed government even after the democratic elections were derecognised in 1990 — accounts for nearly 40% of Myanmar's trade. In recent years, frequent clashes between Myanmar's military and ethnic Chinese rebel groups in the border regions have annoyed Beijing.