President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Comrade Xi Jinping, my dear friend,
It is a pleasure to welcome you at the meeting.
I would like to note that the President and I met in Beijing during the Olympic Games six months ago, and many events have happened since then. The world is rapidly changing but there is one thing that remains unchanged. I am referring to the friendship between China and Russia, and, in the full sense of the term, to our good relations of strategic, comprehensive partnership. And we continue strengthening these relations.
Ahead of the 20th Congress of the Communist Party of China, scheduled for October of this year, I would like to wish you, Comrade President, further success in implementing the large-scale plan for the dynamic development of the Chinese nation.
The Russian-Chinese interstate interaction can be regarded as a model. The foreign policy tandem of Moscow and Beijing plays a key role in ensuring global and regional stability. Together, we support building a just, democratic and multipolar world order based on international rules and the central role of the United Nations, not on certain rules that someone has invented and is attempting to impose on others without even explaining what it is all about.
In general, I must say that the attempts to create a unipolar world have acquired in recent times an absolutely ugly configuration and they are absolutely unacceptable for the overwhelming majority of states on this planet.
We appreciate our Chinese friends’ balanced position in connection with the Ukraine crisis. We understand your questions and your concerns in this regard. During today’s meeting we will certainly explain in detail our position on this issue, although we have spoken about this before now.
For our part, we have firmly, in practice, abided by the One China principle. We condemn provocations staged by the United States and its satellites in the Strait of Taiwan. We discussed this with Speaker of Parliament, Chairman [of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress] Li Zhanshu in Vladivostok a short while ago.
Multifaceted ties between our countries are expanding. Last year, trade grew by 35 percent to over $140 billion. In the first seven months of this year, our trade increased by another 25 percent. I am convinced that by the end of the year we will reach new record high levels, and in the near term, as agreed, we will bring our annual trade to $200 billion or more.
Tomorrow, we will take part in a meeting of the SCO Heads of State Council. Notably, after a three-year hiatus caused by the pandemic, it will be held in person, which is particularly important at this point, since our goal is to ensure an all-round strengthening of the SCO as a platform for constructive and productive interaction.
The SCO includes countries with different cultural and civilisational traditions, foreign policy goals and national development models. However, building our work on the principles of equality and mutual benefit, respecting each other’s sovereignty, and refraining from interfering in internal affairs made it possible for us to make this organisation an effective mechanism for multilateral cooperation.
It is the world’s largest regional organisation that covers a vast geographical area and represents about half of the planet’s population.
I am confident that today’s meeting will provide an additional boost to deepening Russian-Chinese strategic partnership both bilaterally and internationally.