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Cultural exchanges help promote ties

By Zhu Linyong (China Daily)

13:58, April 30, 2012

Russian children look at traditional embroidery by Chinese artists during the Chinese Cultural Festival in Moscow in 2010. (Lu Jinbo / Xinhua)

"Cultural exchanges between China and Russia have reached an unprecedented height in recent years," said Yang Song, Europe and Asia division chief of the Liaison Office of the Ministry of Culture.

"A series of intercultural events have greatly helped promote mutual understanding, and bring Chinese and Russians closer."

The first Sino-Russian cultural cooperation agreement was signed in 1992 in Beijing, and has served as a framework for further exchanges and cooperation in arts and culture.

The past two decades have witnessed the signing and implementation of eight Sino-Russian cultural exchange agreements under the framework.

The currently functioning cultural exchange program is based on the Sino-Russian cooperative plan for 2011-2013, jointly formulated by ministries from the two countries.

In November 2000, the two sides established a vice-premier-level commission, under which are four subcommissions, handling cooperation in education, culture, sports and public health. The subcommissions have proven to be an effective platform and channel for bilateral cultural exchanges.

In recent years, the two countries staged a number of influential, large-scale intercultural exchange events, under the State-level cooperative framework.

In 2006 and 2007, Year of China in Russia and Year of Russia in China were held.

Under the framework of Year of China and Year of Russia, the countries' cultural ministries held hundreds of cultural exchange activities, involving more than 3,000 art and cultural professionals.

In July 2008, a Russian Cultural Festival was held in Beijing as part of the official outreach programs for the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games, ushering in a new era of regular and massive Sino-Russian cultural exchanges.

"Russian culture and arts have deeply influenced a generation of Chinese people," says Zhao Hong, deputy manager of XDR Culture and Communication, which has brought some Russian ballet troupes and dance ensembles to the Chinese market over the years.

"We hope our efforts can help deepen cultural understanding among youths from the two countries."

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