Vladimir Putin: Good afternoon, Mr Ambassador. I am glad to see you. It is a pity you are leaving. We have come to regard you as a fine professional and a friend of our country, a person who has done a great deal to strengthen cooperation between the People’s Republic of China and the Russian Federation.
Your mission here has been very noble, because the strengthening of cooperation between China and Russia meets the direct interests of the People’s Republic of China and the Russian Federation.
Basic documents have been signed with your immediate participation. Of course, this could not have been done if the top political leadership of China and Russia had not been willing to achieve the results that we now have in our bilateral relations.
This applies above all to the positions of former Chinese President Jiang Zemin and Mr Hu Jintao, with whom we are cultivating ever closer business and personal relations. We remember well the Chinese President’s recent visit to Russia. We know his frame of mind as well as the frame of mind of the current leadership of the People’s Republic of China to develop relations with Russia.
Our goal, in turn, is to fulfil all the main provisions of the treaty between Russia and China, a treaty aimed at developing our relations in the 21st century. We continue to cooperate in the United Nations and in international and regional organisations, and it gives me pleasure to know that you will be the first Executive Secretary of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation.
We actively supported your candidacy. I think the coordination of efforts bilaterally and internationally and our cooperation in international organisations will be reflected in our negotiations with Mr Hu during an Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum in Thailand.
Before we continue our present conversation, I would like to thank you for your work here in Moscow and present you with a Certificate of Thanks from the President of the Russian Federation.