YEKATERINBURG, Russia -- Chinese President Hu Jintao arrived in Yekaterinburg in central Russia on Sunday for a summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) and a meeting of BRIC countries, namely Brazil, Russia, India and China.
Chinese President Hu Jintao (2nd L) arrives in Jekaterinburg, Russia, on June 14, 2009, for a summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) and a meeting of BRIC countries, namely Brazil, Russia, India and China. [Xinhua]
Receiving the Chinese president at the airport were Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Alexei Borodavkin and other Russian officials.
At the annual SCO summit, top leaders of the organization's six members will exchange views on how to tackle the current international financial crisis and how to expand cooperation in political, economic, security and other fields.
"For the first time, the leaders of SCO member states and observers will hold a small-size group meeting, which is a new measure taken by the SCO to strengthen substantial cooperation with its observers," Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Li Hui told a press briefing last Tuesday.
He said that the summit was expected to further implement the treaty of long-term neighborliness, friendship and cooperation entered into by and between the SCO member states, boost regional cooperation in the sectors of politics, security, economy, cultural and people-to-people exchanges, work together to tackle the global financial and economic crisis, and promote an early economic recovery in the region.
The summit will yield a joint statement as well as other cooperation documents.
In recent years, the SCO has played an increasingly important role in maintaining regional security and economic development.
Founded in 2001, the SCO consists of Kazakhstan, China, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. Mongolia, India, Pakistan and Iran are observers of the organization.
In Yekaterinburg, President Hu will also attend the first formal meeting of BRIC countries, an acronym for the four fast growing developing economies of Brazil, Russia, India and China At the BRIC meeting on Tuesday, the leaders of the four emerging economies will discuss the major issues such as the international financial crisis, reform of the financial institutions, food and energy security, climate change, trade, and the future of BRIC dialogue.
"We expect the BRIC meeting to expand strategic consensus, consolidate mutual trust, coordinate to cope with the global financial and economic crisis and lay out the blueprint for its future development," said Chinese Vice Foreign Minister He Yafei last Tuesday.
Speaking at a meeting of senior BRIC representatives on security issues on May 29, Chinese State Councilor Dai Bingguo said the BRIC countries should work together to enlarge their consensus, exchange views on major international and regional issues of common concern, strengthen coordination and cooperation, and facilitate the settlement of problems.
At present, Dai said, the countries should reinforce their cooperation in dealing with the economic downturn, enhance coordination on macro-economic policies, jointly oppose protectionism in any form, speed up the reform of the international financial system, and advance the creation of an international cooperation mechanism conforming to globalization and multipolarization.
Chinese President Hu Jintao is welcomed by Russian officials upon arrival in Yekaterinburg, Russia for the annual summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), June 14, 2009. [Xinhua]
The BRIC countries are all important emerging nations and driving forces for the world's common development. They share the same or similar opinions on many international issues and all have the political desire for further cooperation and communication.
In recent years, the four countries have exchanged views on world economic and developing issues of common concern through various channels.
BRIC countries account for 42 percent of the world's population, 14.6 percent of global Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and 12.8 percent of the global trade volume.
From Yekaterinburg, President Hu will travel to Moscow for a state visit, his first to Russia since President Dmitry Medvedev took office in May of 2008.
Chinese foreign ministry officials said that during the visit, Hu will meet Medvedev and other Russian leaders to exchange views on how to further develop the Sino-Russian strategic partnership of cooperation.
In Moscow, President Hu is also expected to attend the activities marking the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Russia.
The Chinese president is on a three-nation trip, which will also take him to Slovakia and Croatia.