CHINESE Vice-Premier and Politburo Standing Committee member Mr Zhu Rongji will visit Canada next month, marking a significant step forward in relations which have been strained since the Beijing massacre nearly four years ago, Canadian sources said. Mr Zhu is scheduled to visit Vancouver, Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal from May 17 to 23. The sources said Mr Zhu was likely to meet the Canadian Prime Minister and the Minister of International Trade. In Toronto, he will attend a one-day seminar on the Chinese economy organised by the law firm Goodman and Associates. In Vancouver, Mr Zhu will attend the opening of a Bank of China office. Mr Zhu will be the highest ranking Chinese official to visit Canada since then-president Mr Yang Shangkun travelled there in 1988. The sources described Mr Zhu's planned visit as a significant development, but said Ottawa remained cool towards Beijing because of human rights concerns. They said Mr Zhu's visit would focus on trade and economic relations. Canada has not declared its relations with China ''normalised'' since June 1989, but trade between the two nations has grown. Bilateral trade was worth a record C$4.59 billion (HK$28 billion) last year, with China recording a slight surplus. This compares with about C$3 billion in 1988, the year before the massacre.