* * *
Vice President of the People’S Republic of China Xi Jinping (translated from Russian): Mr President,
It is a great pleasure to see you again. I welcome you for this state visit and for the SCO’s Beijing summit.
Let me start by congratulating you once again on your election as President of the Russian Federation. I am sure that under you wise leadership the Russian people will attain further great success in building and developing their country.
Our intensive high-level contacts are one of the most vivid signs of the friendly relations between our countries. I made an official visit to Russia two years ago at your invitation. Russia’s rapid development, huge potential, and the positive trends in our bilateral relations’ development made a deep impression on me. I still remember my meeting with you very clearly.
This year, I have had the opportunity to meet in Beijing with Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, Deputy Prime Ministers Vladislav Surkov and Dmitry Rogozin, and with the Defence Minister and Secretary of the Security Council.
Not even a month has passed, and you have now come to us on this state visit. This shows how much attention you and Russia in general give to the relations between our countries. We are sure that we have broadest of horizons before us for developing these relations further.
President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Mr Vice President,
I also recall clearly our meeting in Moscow and am happy to have the chance to continue our business and personal contacts today.
This visit is indeed going very well. We had a very substantial two-part discussion yesterday with President Hu Jintao and signed some very important political and economic agreements. We confirmed our relations’ strategic nature. I am confident that we have excellent economic prospects ahead.
With global and European finances in such a turbulent state right now, our economic cooperation is a key factor in international economic stability.
Russian-Chinese relations are important not just economically, however, but are also a big stabilising factor in international affairs and global security, and ultimately contribute to our countries’ steady development. This is in the interests of both peoples.
I hope very much that today’s visit and the high-level contacts we have planned in China and in Russia, including through our defence agencies, will give impetus to our all-round strategic partnership’s continued development.
We will continue our cooperation. We held successful military exercises just recently in the Yellow Sea. These were the first joint Russian-Chinese naval exercises. Yesterday, we agreed with President Hu Jintao to continue our cooperation in this area.