China’s Communist Party mouthpiece said President Xi Jinping’s speeches on the first day of his state visit to the UK highlighted the mutual benefits of the two countries’ strengthening relationship. The impact of the warming ties could be seen by the UK becoming the first western country to join the China-led Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, the People’s Daily said. The UK has also become the largest offshore trading centre in China’s currency outside Hong Kong, the article added. Xi also highlighted that the UK was the first European Union country to embrace a comprehensive strategic partnership with China, the newspaper said. He also shunned historical differences between the two nations when Britain was a colonial power and stressed how close the two countries ties had been since ancient times. He cited the influence of Confucianism and Taoism, as well ancient China inventions on British culture and the development of science, as well as the charms of Chinese tea and silk among British people. Xi said British books such as the 18th-century political treatise The Wealth of Nations had opened up new frontiers for Chinese thinkers. READ MORE: Queen’s banquet for Xi Jinping: Balmoral venison and James Bond theme song from 'The Spy Who Loved Me' The party mouthpiece also hailed Xi for not avoiding political issues in his speech to Parliament. Xi has repeatedly mentioned the notion of a “common-interest community” in recent years, but rarely before now has it been used to describe the mutual ties between China and the UK, the People’s Daily said.