Jiang: China, Russia Always Be Good Partners

Chinese President Jiang Zemin said on July 18 that China will work with Russia to bring bilateral relations to a new stage where the two countries will always be " good friends, good neighbors and good partners."

Jiang made the remarks during talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin, who is on a state visit to China, the first since he won the Russian presidential election in March.

Jiang said it is a correct and historical choice for China and Russia to establish and develop a strategic partnership of cooperation. The partnership serves the strategic interests of the two countries and the needs of safeguarding world peace and stability.

The partnership will also help push forward the process of multi-polarization of the world, Jiang stressed, adding that to strengthen the good-neigborly friendship and the strategic cooperation with Russia is China's set policy in its relations with Russia.

The strategic partnership between China and Russia has been fruitful with the joint efforts of both sides over the past few years, Jiang noted, adding that their meeting served as "an important link between past and future" in Sino-Russian relations.

President Putin has paid attention to Russia's relations with China since he was prime minister, and has made unremitting efforts to strengthen cooperation with China in various areas, Jiang noted.

After becoming president, Putin has reiterated that Russia will continue to develop the strategic partnership of cooperation with China. In particular, he selected China as the first leg of his Asian tour.

"We greatly appreciate that," Jiang said.

As two permanent members of the United Nations Security Council and two major nuclear powers, China and Russia share major responsibility for world peace and security, said the Chinese president.

Putin said Russia attaches great importance to expanding its relations with China. His current visit is to reinforce the existing friendship and make plans for the long-term development of bilateral relations.

Russia is determined to build an all-dimensional, multi-tier and high-level relationship with China. The Russian side thinks this will serve not only the interests of people in both countries but also the peace and stability of the entire world, Putin said.

He noted Russia-China relations have had a solid foundation thanks to the joint efforts of Russia's first President Boris Yeltsin and Chinese President Jiang Zemin.

On the issue of Taiwan, Putin stressed that the Russian stance on Taiwan will remain unchanged. Russia will firmly support China' s reunification, he said.

Jiang said he appreciated his remarks, and said the Chechen issue is an internal affair of Russia, and foreign countries have no right to interfere in the matter.

Jiang pledged China's continuous support for Russia's efforts to fight against terrorists and separatists, and actions to safeguard the country's integrity.

The two presidents agree that to ensure their relationship as good friends, good neighbors and good partners, the two countries would sign a cooperative treaty of non-alliance, and the two foreign ministries are authorized to conduct negotiations on the matter.

They also highly value the successful resolution of the majority of the border issues between the two countries, and agreed to speed up negotiation to expedite the settlement of the remaining points.

On economic and trade relations, Jiang pointed out the two countries would increase overall cooperation in all fields, including the economic and trade sectors, in a bid to lay a firm foundation for their strategic partnership, and he outlined several reasons and suggestions for doing so.

First, China and Russia, close geographically, are highly complementary in their economy, science, technology, resources, personnel, and other areas, and great potential remains to be tapped. Both sides should carry out more explorations in this regard in line with the rule of the market economy based on mutual trust and mutual benefit.

Second, the arrangement of regular meetings between prime ministers of the two countries has done a lot to stimulate bilateral cooperation in all specific fields, and both sides should make full preparations for the fifth regular meeting this fall so that they can reach as many agreements as possible.

Third, China will give preferential treatment to importing commodities from Russia and Russia, on the other hand, should adopt the reciprocal measure to expand the proportion of Chinese commodities in the Russian market. Both sides should work through joint efforts to push forward a balanced progress of bilateral economic and trade cooperation.

Fourth, both sides should create a sound environment for enterprises of both countries to actively carry out cooperation. China believes that Sino-Russian economic and trade cooperation will get a big boost through the unremitting efforts of both sides.

Sharing Jiang's views, Putin said that there's huge potential for cooperation between the two countries, and both should continue to work together in fields like economy, trade, science and technology, energy, military technology, and others.

The two heads of state also exchanged views on international issues of common concern, and concluded that China-Russia cooperation has been especially effective in a series of important international and regional matters including human rights, anti- ballistic missiles, military control, regional security, and the reform of the UN.

Practices show that to strengthen the Sino-Russian cooperation in international arena is of great importance to safeguarding the interests of the two countries and to the global strategic balance and stability.

The two presidents share the view that China and Russia should further increase cooperation, jointly maintain the authority of the UN Security Council and the basic norms of international law, oppose hegemonism and power politics, and push forward the multi- polarization of the world and the establishment of a new world order.

After the talks, five major documents were signed between the two countries including the Beijing Declaration of the People's Republic of China (PRC) and the Russian Federation and the Joint Statement of the PRC President and the Russian Federation President on the Anti-Ballistic Missile Issue.

The two presidents also met with the press after the signing ceremony. President Jiang is to host a grand banquet in honor of President Putin at the Great Hall of the People this evening.


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