With joint efforts from both sides, Chinese President Xi Jinping's upcoming visit to Russia will be a great success and push bilateral relations into a new era, Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Zhang Hanhui said Thursday.
At the invitation of Russian President Vladimir Putin, President Xi will pay a state visit to Russia and attend the 23rd St. Petersburg International Economic Forum from June 5 to 7.
President Xi and President Putin will comprehensively sum up the experience on the development of bilateral relations in the past 70 years, chart the course for their future development, and upgrade and elevate the ties, Zhang said.
At present, the international situation is witnessing unprecedented changes in a century, and the basic norms governing international relations have been seriously impacted by rising unilateralism. Regional hotspot issues are fermenting, and the common threats and challenges facing human society are on the rise, said Zhang at a press briefing on the visit.
Under current circumstances, China-Russia relations have become increasingly mature, stable and strong, said Zhang, adding that "the political mutual trust between the two countries is solid and the two sides firmly support each other on issues concerning their respective core interests and major concerns."
According to Zhang, trade between China and Russia hit a record of over 100 billion U.S. dollars last year. Strategic projects in fields of energy, aerospace and interconnectivity have been solidly promoted. Besides, cooperation in emerging fields such as agriculture, finance, science and technology, and e-commerce has developed rapidly.
The cooperation between the two countries has demonstrated strong endogenous driving forces and broad development prospects, Zhang added.
The two sides jointly held the year of bilateral cooperation and exchanges at local levels in 2018 and 2019, with local exchanges continuing to expand and people-to-people and cultural exchanges continuing to heat up, Zhang said.
China and Russia have carried out close and effective coordination in international affairs, firmly upholding an international system with the United Nations as its core and an international order based on the international law, and staunchly safeguarding world peace, stability and international fairness and justice, Zhang said. "The two countries advocate multilateralism and an open world economy, and have played a role as a ballast stone and stabilizer in the changing international situation."
"This is Xi's first state visit to Russia since his re-election as Chinese president, which will be of milestone significance in the development of bilateral relations and will surely promote greater development of bilateral ties under the new situation," Zhang said.
Noting this year marks the 70th anniversary of the establishment of bilateral diplomatic ties, Zhang said that during his visit, Xi will hold a series of activities with President Putin, jointly attend events such as a gathering celebrating the 70th anniversary of the ties, and sign or witness the signing of some important cooperation documents.
On Xi's attendance of the 23rd St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, Zhang said the Chinese president will deliver a speech at the plenary session of the forum, expounding China's ideas on sustainable development, and working with all parties to advocate multilateralism and improve global governance for the common development and prosperity of the global village.
"This visit will consolidate the political foundation of Sino-Russian relations, reaffirm their mutual support to each other on issues involving respective core and major concerns, and ensure the ties will not be affected by any change in the international situation," said Zhang, adding that the visit will also open up new prospects for pragmatic cooperation in various fields, and help translate the advantages in high-level political relations into more tangible results.
It is believed that with the joint efforts of China and Russia, Xi's visit to Russia will be a complete success, as it will promote bilateral relations to enter a new era and contribute more to the two countries' development, and world peace and stability, Zhang said.