Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov © Aleksandr Shherbak/TASS
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov
© Aleksandr Shherbak/TASS

The two-day conference “Russia-China: transition to new quality of bilateral relations” opens in Moscow on Monday. The forum organized by the Russian Council on International Relations (RCIR) will gather politicians, high-ranking diplomats, experts and entrepreneurs.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov will make a speech at the conference on May 31.

The event is devoted to two important dates – 15th anniversary of signing a bilateral agreement on good-neighborly relations, friendship and cooperation, and upcoming visit of the Russian President Vladimir Putin to China in June.

Among the main topics on the agenda are practical issues of linking the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) and Silk Road Economic Belt (SREB).

“The cooperation between two strategic projects creates optimal conditions for forming a principally new economic and political environment on the Eurasian space,” the Council said. “However, crisis events in the global economic system and complicated processes in national economics of Russia and China create new challenges for fulfilling large-scale development projects as they require new, innovational approaches to cooperation.”

The Russian Foreign Ministry noted that it is important to discuss main achievements at the conference and analyze unresolved problems in bilateral cooperation, as well as to prepare proposals on further development of the strategic partnership.

Preparations for visit

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov visited Beijing on April 28-29, in the framework of preparations for Russian President Vladimir Putin’s visit to China. Lavrov met with Chinese President Xi Jinping.

According to Lavrov, proposals are being prepared in all spheres of cooperation “with an aim of further deepening cooperation in politics, economy and humanitarian sphere.”

“We have big agreements in the economic sphere, and we want to do as much as possible to promote them in the practical sense before the Russian President Vladimir Putin’s visit. Of course, we closely cooperate on the international arena, where our cooperation serves as a very important stabilizing factor,” Lavrov said.

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said that the sides will increase their cooperation in energy, innovations and production.

Linking integrations

Apart from the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) and BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa), the topic of linking integrational processes in EAEU and Silk Road Economic Belt are also on the agenda of relations between Moscow and Beijing.

Cooperation is developing very fast as EAEU is already preparing a corresponding document.

“Dialogue is simultaneously developing at the level of foreign ministers of Russia and China, devoted to coordinating the list of promising projects for implementation in the context of a general framework which we characterize with the term ‘linking’,” Lavrov said in Beijing. “These projects are being developed not only as exclusively Russian-Chinese, but they are also open for admitting other interested partners.”.