Apple CEO Tim Cook met with Chinese Vice Premier Li Keqiang to discuss intellectual-property issues and greater cooperation, according to “The Wall Street Journal” (

It was the strongest signal yet “that the company is strengthening ties in a market it long neglected,” the article adds. Cook meet with Li, who is expected to be named premier next year, on Tuesday, state radio and television reported.

“China will create a good environment for and strengthen the protection of intellectual-property rights for fair competition among various enterprises including foreign and domestic ones, according to the Chinese law,” Li said.

Also, in a note to clients — as reported by “Barron’s” ( — Barclays Capital’s Ben Reitzes thinks Cook’s China visit could mean a China Mobile/iPhone deal. The analyst thinks that China Mobile could began selling the upcoming “iPhone 5” next year.