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By Hu Yongqi in St. Petersburg, Russia | China Daily | Updated: 2016-11-08 04:05
Twenty-one agreements were signed between China and Russia on Monday to further promote cooperation in various fields, including on high-speed railways, during Premier Li Keqiang’s visit to St. Petersburg.
Li and his Russian counterpart, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, witnessed the signing of the agreements — which also included civil nuclear power technologies, energy projects and linking China’s Belt and Road Initiative with the Russia-dominated Eurasian Economic Union — after the 21st China-Russia Prime Ministers’ Regular Meeting in St. Petersburg.
Premier Li arrived in St. Petersburg on Sunday, the fourth stop of an eight-day Eurasian trip that has also taken him to Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan and Latvia. He was accompanied by Medvedev to visit the State Hermitage Museum, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The coastal city, Russia’s second-largest, is also Medvedev’s hometown, and the two went there under a special "hometown diplomacy" agreement. Medvedev previously visited Li’s hometown of Hefei, Anhui province, at Li’s invitation.
"Both sides have reached important consensus on trade, investment, education and people-to-people exchanges," said Premier Li. "There is still more new potential to tap for bilateral cooperation ... which is beneficial to both peoples and regional development."
Medvedev said both countries are carrying out large projects in infrastructure, nuclear power generators and high-speed railway, each costing billions of US dollars.
Both countries will cooperate more in small and medium-sized enterprises, he added.
A joint statement issued after the meeting summed up the achievements of bilateral cooperation and will guide the next cooperative steps in trade, investment, energy and people-to-people exchanges. Additionally, China and Russia will safeguard regional and global peace and stability as well as establish a fair and rational world order, the statement said.
Li Xing, a professor of international relations at Beijing Normal University, said regular meetings allow the two leaders to communicate effectively on major issues and facilitate economic cooperation in a timely manner. He added that China-Russia cooperation is characterized by high synergy and major projects that reflect complementary and win-win collaborations.
Zhang Zhihao contributed to this story.