Chinese President Xi Jinping told British Prime Minister Theresa May on Thursday that their countries should take trade ties to “a new level” as London scouts the globe for fresh partnerships after its contentious EU exit.

Hounded by Brexit rows at home, May is seeking to deepen trade relations with the world’s second largest economy as Britain prepares to leave the European Union next year.

The embattled prime minister and senior Chinese leaders championed a “golden era” of relations between their two countries throughout her visit.

But criticism in London over her domestic agenda and her handling of Britain’s vexed divorce with the European Union loomed large, prompting her to declare she was “not a quitter” before her arrival on Wednesday.

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