With a host of new cooperation deals signed Monday, China and Russia further consolidated their partnership, a move leaders on both sides consider will benefit not only the two countries, but also world peace, regional stability and global collaboration.
Visiting Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and his Russian counterpart, Dmitry Medvedev, witnessed the signing of about 40 agreements after holding the 19th China-Russia Prime Ministers' Regular Meeting in Moscow.
NEW COOPERATION BLUEPRINT
A local currency swap deal worth 150 billion yuan (24.4 billion U.S. dollars) between the central banks of China and Russia was among the documents signed, read a statement issued by the People's Bank of China.
The three-year agreement, extendable on mutual consent, is expected to facilitate bilateral trade and direct investment between the two countries.
China would like to enhance cooperation with Russia on major investment projects in such areas as mining, chemical industry, agriculture and infrastructure construction, Li said in his talks with Medvedev.
China is also ready to advance the establishment of a Eurasian high-speed transport corridor linking Beijing and Moscow, Li said, adding that the current priority should be the high-speed railway between Moscow and Kazan.
Meanwhile, Beijing will deepen cooperation with Moscow in nuclear power and energy in an integrated way that covers upstream, midstream and downstream industries, the Chinese premier said.
At a joint press conference with Medvedev after their meeting, Li hailed the promising bilateral people-to-people cooperation.
The premier proposed that the two countries strengthen cooperation in running schools, developing cultural and educational industries, implementing the China-Russia Youth Friendly Exchange Year program, and jointly commemorating the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II.
Through those measures, he said, the two sides will cement mutual understanding and friendship between their peoples and inject more vitality into bilateral all-round cooperation.
For his part, Medvedev said Russia is willing to promote two-way large-scale investment and advance cooperation with China in areas including transportation infrastructure and aviation.
The two countries also agree to open their markets wider to each other and stand against trade protectionism, according to a joint communique issued after the pair's meeting.
When meeting Valentina Matviyenko, chairwoman of the Federation Council, or the upper house of parliament, Li said China will also explore new fields of cooperation and increase sub-national exchanges.
Noting that China's position as a developing country will remain unchanged for a long period of time, and that China still has a long way to go in modernization, the premier said his country still has enormous development potential.
That reality, he pointed out, will provide new opportunities for the two countries to further cement and deepen bilateral cooperation.
Also on Monday, Li told Russian parliament leaders he hoped that the national legislatures of the two countries would strengthen exchanges, and actively support bilateral cooperation in various fields.
WIN-WIN STRATEGY, ALL-WIN RESULTS
Li said the China-Russia partnership has entered a new stage of development and boasts bright prospects.
Cooperation between China and Russia, respectively the most populous and the largest country in the world, is strategic, stable and long-running in nature, he told the joint press conference.
The win-win bilateral cooperation serves the interests and needs of both countries, and benefits not only the two peoples but also global peace and prosperity, he said.
Medvedev echoed the viewpoint of the Chinese premier, saying Russia and China are truly strategic partners of coordination and further enhancing bilateral cooperation benefits not only the two nations but also the whole world.
For her part, Matviyenko said that China and Russia respect and accommodate each other's core interests and major concerns, and bilateral ties are at an "all-time high point."
The two countries both stand for multi-polarity of the world and democratization of international relations, and both are important forces for world peace and stability, she said.
During a meeting with the Chinese premier, Sergei Naryshkin, speaker of the Russian State Duma, or the lower house of parliament, said Russia and China firmly support each other on issues concerning national independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity.
The two sides, Naryshkin said, closely coordinate with each other on international affairs to steadfastly safeguard global peace, stability and development.
The Russia-China relationship is the most important priority in Moscow's foreign policy, he said, adding that Russia is willing to further deepen the comprehensive strategic partnership of coordination between the two countries.
Li arrived in Moscow Sunday for an official visit to Russia, his first since he took office last year. His ongoing three-nation tour has taken him to Germany and will conclude in Italy.