CHINA and Hong Kong are to jointly fight cross-border offences - with a new computer system. The head of China's Interpol agency, Zhu Entao, said that the X-400 system, which has links to Interpol headquarters in Lyons, France, would be an invaluable crime-solving tool. It would allow quicker relaying of evidence and particulars of offences. Mr Zhu said: 'The network has strengthened our communication in faster and more accurate ways and provided us with broader information. 'In addition to Interpol's working language in the network, we can soon use a new dialogue - Chinese - and this will enhance our communication. 'We have to stay ahead of the criminals.' The development was announced after the eight-strong Chinese delegation's five-day tour of Hong Kong for the 22nd bi-annual talks on crime trends. The Police Commissioner, Eddie Hui Ki-on, said that the teams had discussed drugs, smuggling, the rapid rise in commercial crime, and improved officer exchanges. Mr Hui also pushed strongly for Public Security Bureau officials to testify in cases in Hong Kong. Questioned on the failure of bureau officers to testify - which recently resulted in the dropping of charges against a murder suspect - Mr Zhu admitted that there were differences of opinion over legal matters. But he added: 'If we enhance our co-operation and communication, this can be solved through discussions.' Mr Hui said the Chinese tour - which included visits to Lantau Island and the New Territories - had been a success. 'Our mutual visits and joint investigations have significantly increased,' he said. This year, 17 criminals wanted in Hong Kong have been handed over by China. But because of the death penalty for crimes in China - and the absence of an agreement - the territory does not allow fugitives to be returned to the mainland. A team of government officials in charge of finance will travel to Beijing tomorrow for two days of talks next week on the territory's budget. Led by the Secretary for the Treasury, Kwong Ki-chi, the team will brief the Chinese side on issues relating to the revenue of the annual budget.