Mr Ivanov announced that during their meeting, he and President of China Xi Jinping discussed cooperation between Russia and China in the fuel and energy sector, with particular focus on supplies of Russian gas to China through the western and eastern routes. Mr Ivanov noted that talks are actively continuing on the western route and are currently focused exclusively on the price issue, while the plan for the eastern route is being carried out by both sides.
Sergei Ivanov also talked about harmonisation of a mechanism for the Chinese side to finance a share of the Yamal LNG facility – a project to extract, liquefy and deliver natural gas. The Chief of Staff of the Presidential Executive Office stressed the importance of its implementation for developing transport infrastructure on the Yamal peninsula, particularly the Sabetta airport.
Overall, Mr Ivanov expressed confidence in the success and timelines for implementing major Russian-Chinese economic projects, including the coordination between building up the Eurasian Economic Union and the Silk Road Economic Belt, providing coordination of efforts by China and Russia, simplifying processes for mutual investments and developing transport infrastructure.
In addition, in answering a question about trade and economic cooperation between Russia and China, Mr Ivanov stated that there is no panic over the drop in trade, nor should there be. According to Mr Ivanov, the drop in trade is observed only based on price calculations, while the volume of goods traded is actually growing. Moreover, this does not only apply to energy but also to other sectors, including supplies of agricultural products.
While talking with media representatives, Sergei Ivanov touched on the topic of bilateral cooperation in telecommunication technologies, stating that an agreement had been reached on launching a third Russian television channel in China called Katyusha. In speaking about the title of the new channel, he noted that the word Katyusha is well known to Chinese audiences because of the Soviet song of the same name.
Sergei Ivanov assessed relations between Russia and China as a strategic partnership, stating his opinion that a unique mechanism of cooperation has been developed in recent years between the Russian Presidential Executive Office and the Executive Office of China’s Communist Party Central Committee. Mr Ivanov recalled that in the past, the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China did not maintain any contacts with foreign organisations and structures.
Sergei Ivanov also focused attention on China’s positive experience in fighting corruption, which he felt Russia could partially draw from, first and foremost with regard to legislation. The Chief of Staff of the Presidential Office explained that China also uses Russia’s experience, specifying that China is interested in preventing corruption and how Russia defines officials’ conflicts of interests.