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Xi to attend forum in Vladivostok

By Cao Desheng | China Daily | Updated: 2018-09-08 06:56

Trip, including meeting with Putin, to give new boost to bilateral relations

President Xi Jinping will attend the 4th Eastern Economic Forum next week in Vladivostok, Russia, on a trip to inject fresh impetus into Sino-Russian ties and open up a new process of regional peace, stability and mutually beneficial cooperation, the Foreign Ministry said on Friday.

Xi's two-day Russia visit, starting on Tuesday, will be the first time that a Chinese head of state attends the regional forum, Assistant Foreign Minister Zhang Hanhui said at a news briefing on Friday.

Xi will meet with his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, for the third time this year and attend the ceremony of the signing of cooperation agreements between China and Russia, Zhang said, adding that Xi will also make a speech at the forum.

The previous two meetings between Xi and Putin took place in June, when Putin attended the Shanghai Cooperation Organization Qingdao Summit and made a state visit to China, and in July, when both leaders attended the BRICS Summit in Johannesburg, South Africa.

Xi's attendance at the regional forum displays the high-level development of China-Russia relations and China's high attention to Far East cooperation, as well as its determination to work with regional countries to promote regional growth and prosperity, Zhang said.

It is also "an embodiment of the good working relationship and profound friendship" between Xi and Putin, he added.

The two leaders will jointly attend activities related to trade and cultural, people-to-people and local government exchanges, Zhang said.

Some children from Sichuan and Gansu provinces who had been affected by earthquakes will be invited to revisit the All-Russian Children's Center "Okean" in Vladivostok to attend exchange activities, according to Zhang.

Following the devastating earthquakes in Sichuan and Gansu provinces in May 2008, around 2,000 quake-affected children had been invited to the children's center for recreation and medical treatment to recover from their ordeal. Xi visited the center in 2010 when he was vice-president.

Under the guidance of the two leaders, the comprehensive strategic partnership of coordination between China and Russia has entered a new era of high-level development, Zhang said.

The two leaders have reached consensus that, regardless of changes in the international landscape, China and Russia firmly consider each other as a priority in developing diplomatic relations, Zhang said. They will use this meeting to plan the next stage of the pragmatic cooperation between the two countries, he added.

Xi will also have friendly exchanges on the sidelines of the regional forum with leaders of other countries attending the forum, Zhang said.

Jiang Yi, a Russian studies expert at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, said the two countries have common aspirations to work together to strengthen comprehensive coordination and cooperation. The two countries also need to strengthen alignment of their development strategies to enhance the high-level partnership, including regional development coordination, Jiang said.

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