New Year messages

Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin agree to boost cooperation

China's President Xi Jinping (left) and Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin shaking hands during a bilateral meeting on the sidelines of the G20 Summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina, on Nov 30, 2018.
China's President Xi Jinping (left) and Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin shaking hands during a bilateral meeting on the sidelines of the G20 Summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina, on Nov 30, 2018. PHOTO: AFP

BEIJING • Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin have agreed to use the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between the two countries this year as an opportunity to promote bilateral ties.

They also expressed their hopes of further strengthening pragmatic cooperation between China and Russia as they exchanged New Year congratulatory letters.

Calling 2018 a year of special significance in the history of Sino-Russian relations, Mr Xi said the two countries' relationship entered a new era as they both completed their own important domestic political agendas.

Mr Xi said in the message that high-level exchanges between China and Russia are even closer, and that pragmatic cooperation in various fields has achieved fruitful outcomes. Political mutual trust has also intensified.

The two countries also actively coordinate in international and regional affairs and play an important and constructive role in safeguarding international justice and world peace and stability, he added.

In the new year, Mr Xi said, he stands ready to work with Mr Putin to continue to guide bilateral ties and push for cooperation between both nations to make new progress so as to further benefit the countries and their peoples.

In his message, Mr Putin said the Russia-China comprehensive strategic partnership of coordination reached an unprecedented high point last year - the two sides carried out meaningful political dialogue, bilateral trade volume greatly increased, and coordination in the resolution of major regional and global issues was productive.

 
 

He trusts the two sides will use the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties as an opportunity to continue to develop effective collaboration in bilateral and multilateral affairs.

Russian Ambassador to China Andrei Denisov said last week that Mr Putin will be a key guest and participant in the second Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation, to be held in Beijing in April. Mr Xi will also visit Russia this year.

China's Foreign Ministry confirmed last Wednesday that the two sides are making preparations for a series of high-level talks regarding the upcoming exchanges.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 02, 2019, with the headline 'Xi and Putin agree to boost cooperation'. Print Edition | Subscribe