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Interview with Putin: Xi a very reliable partner

(CRI Online)    08:35, June 06, 2018

Just ahead of his trip to China, Russian President Vladimir Putin had an interview with Shen Haixiong, president of China Media Group. 

Russian President Vladimir Putin has an interview with Shen Haixiong, president of China Media Group. [Photo: cri.cn]

Topics of their conversation have ranged from Russia-China partnership, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization to this year's World Cup in Russia.

The interview took place last Thursday in Moscow.

This is the first interview with a foreign media outlet Putin has accepted as part of his new presidential term.

It's also the first time that he has sat down exclusively with a Chinese media outlet at the Kremlin.

The over-half-an-hour interview began with discussions about Russia's relationship with China.

Putin has depicted China as a reliable partner, ally and friend, hailing the bilateral relationship as unmatched in the world.

He has attributed the bilateral relationship to the Treaty of Good-Neighborliness and Friendly Cooperation signed between the two sides back in 2001.

He also suggests the similar ways the two sides want to build their nations and treat their people have brought Russia and China ever closer.

"What's the most important part of the speech delivered by President Xi Jinping to the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China? What did the president talk about? That's improving the lives of the people. There are many different ways to attain that goal, but the goal remains the same. For Russia, besides improving the living standards of our citizens, we don't have any other goals. Based on this, we are also considering how to construct Russia-China relations, how to fulfill these goals and ensure national security and how to strengthen the effort to build the new economy especially in terms of modern innovation, digital economy, gene technology, modern harmonious society and the governance of the country and its economy. So we share many similarities and I believe any efforts will lead to new progress," said Putin.

This year marks the 5th anniversary of the launch of the Belt and Road Initiative.

The process to align the China-proposed plan with the Russia-led Eurasian Economic Union kicked off in May 2015 following a joint statement endorsed by the two heads of state.

Over the past three years, the focus has been largely on energy, transportation and aerospace.

Putin has stressed the importance of connecting the two countries' development strategies.

He also says he expects bilateral trade to continue growing.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has an interview with Shen Haixiong, president of China Media Group. [Photo: cri.cn]

Trade last year surpassed 87 billion US dollars.

High on Putin's agenda in China will be the Qingdao Summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization.

Putin suggested the bloc, through last year's expansion, has now become a more global organization.

He also says the SCO is not designed to create confrontation, but rather unite strengths.

"We are certainly not to confront other countries, but to provide necessary conditions to guarantee comprehensive and multi-dimensional cooperation between the SCO countries and with non-SCO nations, no matter where these countries are and which continent they belong to. Uniting the strengths of these countries will undoubtedly contribute to our own development and influence the global situation as well. I believe that influence will be positive," said Putin.

As part of the interview, Putin also talked about his personal friendship with Chinese President Xi Jinping.

Since 2013, the two leaders have met each other over 20 times.

Putin notes that he and Xi Jinping shared the Russian leader's 61st birthday together in 2013 on the sideline of an Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum in Indonesia.

"On that day, after we finished our work, President Xi came to celebrate my birthday. He is easy going and sincere, a very reliable partner. Like leaders of many other countries, he is striving for the maximum outcome of his work to benefit the people of his country. He is excellent at analysis. It's really interesting to discuss with him about international and economic issues," said Putin.

Putin has also taken time to note Russia's stance on the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.

He also took time to answer some questions asked by the over 10 million Chinese participants in an online poll conducted by CRI News App - China-Russia Toutiao. 

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)
(Web editor: Xu JiaWei, Bianji)

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