Wu to attend economic forum in Russia

Vice-Premier Wu Yi will leave for Russia next week to attend the 11th St Petersburg International Economic Forum and a number of other programs associated with the "Year of China" in Russia, Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu said yesterday.

As the chairwoman of the organizing committee of the "Year of China", Wu will attend a round-table discussion on China-Russia trade and investment cooperation and the opening ceremony of "Shanghai Week". The annual St Petersburg International Economic Forum is the largest of its kind in the Commonwealth of Independent States and central and eastern Europe.

China has sent a delegation to the past two forums, Jiang said.

In Moscow, the Sino-Russian Committee for Friendship, Peace and Development opened its seventh plenary session on Wednesday, with presidents of both the countries sending their greetings.

"The committee has been carrying high the banner of Russian-Chinese friendship for 10 years of its existence," President Hu Jintao was quoted by Xinhua as saying.

"It has held several hundred interesting activities that have deepened the friendship between our peoples, consolidated the social base of Russian-Chinese friendship and made valuable contribution to the development of Sino-Russian strategic coordinating partnership," Hu said.

Russian President Vladimir Putin, too, hailed the commission's contribution to Sino-Russian relations.

"A vast experience of cultural exchanges and business contacts - of the dialogues of academic circles, of the ties among the youth, women's and sports organizations and of inter-regional cooperation - has been accumulated over this period. The committee plays an important role in the success of functions in the framework of the theme years of Russia and China," Putin said.

The session endorsed the plan of the committee's work for 2007, which includes over 60 activities in various areas of humanitarian and business cooperation between the two countries.

The committee was founded in 1997 on the initiative of the heads of states of Russia and China, and is an important means of "people-to-people diplomacy".

Source: China Daily

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