Economic cooperation between China and Russia developed rapidly in 2004, with trade hitting the record US$20 billion, said a senior commerce official.
Speaking at a trade cooperation conference on Friday, Vice Minister of Commerce Zhang Zhigang said China has finished market access negotiations with Russia this year, a necessary step for Russia's entry into the WTO.
According to the agreement reached in the negotiations, Russia will impose less taxes on Chinese goods and will further open its market in Sino-Russian trade.
Zhang said a number of famous Chinese companies have successfully entered the Russian market. China's biggest TV manufacturer TCL sells more than 400,000 sets in Russia every year, while the Guangdong-based DVD and phone maker Bubugao Corporation has achieved an annual sale of 100 million US dollars in recent years.
By the end of 2004, the Ministry of Commerce approved more than 680 million US dollar investment to Russia, while Russia's investment in China has also amounted to 450 million US dollars.
"Based on mutual trust in politics, the two nations are starting high-speed economic and trade development," said Zhang, who said it was of great importance to consolidate and promote the strategic partnership between China and Russia.
The bilateral trade will grow to 60 billion to 80 billion US dollars by 2010, the official said.
(Xinhua News Agency January 8, 2005)