Visiting Vice Premier Zeng Peiyan called for a strengthening of regional cooperation between China and Russia on Tuesday during a meeting with the governor of the Irkutsk region.
Political trust between China and Russia has deepened and economic and trade ties have expanded in recent years, bringing rapid growth of regional cooperation between the two countries, Zeng told Boris Govorin, governor of the Irkutsk region, during their meeting in this Siberian city.
Adjacent to China, the Irkutsk region boasts well-established industries, convenient transport facilities, rich natural resources and advanced technologies. The region, therefore, has an incomparable geographical advantage and a great potential for economic and technological cooperation with China, Zeng said.
Zeng expressed his hope that the Irkutsk region will work to create a better business environment to attract investment and protect the legal rights of investors and workers.
The regional governments and enterprises of the two countries need to cooperate more extensively in such areas as infrastructure, agriculture, tourism, construction industry and resources exploitation so as to boost the growth of bilateral regional ties, Zeng said.
Govorin, for his part, said the Irkutsk region has a long tradition of cooperation with China and, as bilateral trade has grown rapidly in recent years, China has now become the biggest trading partner for his region.
The governor welcomed more investment by Chinese companies and expressed his hope that the two countries will work jointly in boosting border trade and exploring new areas of cooperation.
During his stay in Irkutsk, Zeng was also briefed on the joint oil and gas projects between China and Russia.
(Xinhua News Agency June 8, 2005)