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Igor Ivanov

President of the Russian International Affairs Council (RIAC), Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation (1998–2004)

Esteemed colleagues,

It is a great honour for me to be opening the fifth annual Conference on cooperation between Russia and China organized by the Russian International Affairs Council and our strategic partner, the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.

Each year, as we conduct a comprehensive analysis of the state of relations between our countries, we are with a deep sense of satisfaction able to note that these relations have reached yet new heights in all areas of bilateral cooperation. This speaks to the fact that our countries are on the right track, successfully implementing the decisions and agreements of our leaders – President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin and President of the People’s Republic of China Xi Jinping. It is the regular meetings and negotiations of our leaders that form our objectives and give a political impetus to the ongoing development of relations between Russia and China. This year’s Conference comes immediately after Vladimir Putin’s visit to China, where he took part in the Second Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation, and on the eve of President Xi Jinping’s visit to Russia. The results of these bilateral summits will be the focus of this Conference.

Esteemed colleagues,

It is a great honour for me to be opening the fifth annual Conference on cooperation between Russia and China organized by the Russian International Affairs Council and our strategic partner, the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.

Each year, as we conduct a comprehensive analysis of the state of relations between our countries, we are with a deep sense of satisfaction able to note that these relations have reached yet new heights in all areas of bilateral cooperation. This speaks to the fact that our countries are on the right track, successfully implementing the decisions and agreements of our leaders – President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin and President of the People’s Republic of China Xi Jinping. It is the regular meetings and negotiations of our leaders that form our objectives and give a political impetus to the ongoing development of relations between Russia and China. This year’s Conference comes immediately after Vladimir Putin’s visit to China, where he took part in the Second Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation, and on the eve of President Xi Jinping’s visit to Russia. The results of these bilateral summits will be the focus of this Conference.

Given that our Conference is being held on the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between our countries, we will also have the opportunity to take a retrospective look at the road we have travelled and, as we always do, make practical recommendations on the basis of this on how to further improve the mechanisms of Russia–China cooperation in order to increase their effectiveness.

The issue of Russia–China cooperation continues to be the top priority in the work of the Russian International Affairs Council. In the last year alone, approximately 20 delegations from research institutions and universities all around China visited the RIAC offices. We regularly publish analytical materials on current issues in bilateral relations, including the now traditional joint policy briefs in collaboration with the Institute of East European, Russian, and Central Asian Studies of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences and the annual “Russian–Chinese Dialogue” report prepared by the Russian International Affairs Council, the Institute of Far Eastern Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences and Fudan University. The fifth edition of the report, which we believe acquires greater analytical value with each passing year, has just been published.

By gradually building a qualitatively new type of relationship, not only do Russia and China successfully address issues of socioeconomic development, but they also play an increasing role in the international arena. The world is going through a complicated period, crises are intensifying and security threats are growing. It is probably too early to talk about the future configuration of the world order. But we can say with full confidence that Russia and China, whose combined political, economic and military potential assure their influence in the world, will form key centres of this world order. By working together and, where necessary, supporting each other, our countries are able to not only ensure our own security and protect our interests on the international stage, but also to jointly promote new approaches to the most pressing issues facing the planet today and to the formation of a fair and secure world order.  

Expanding the political dialogue between Russia and China presents new challenges for the expert community. Our work should not only focus on current trends and problems, but also formulate recommendations for the development of long-term, strategic interaction between Russia and China. It is important that our expert dialogue helps us to develop common views on international processes and identify priority areas for cooperation.

I would like to take this opportunity to express particular gratitude to Maxim Akimov for his personal participation in the work of the Conference and, through him, the Government of the Russian Federation for the help and support it has provided to make this Conference, and other events, happen. As in previous years, we have received great support from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation, as well as from the Embassy of the Russian Federation in China and the Embassy of China in the Russian Federation.  

I would also like to express my gratitude to Mr. Dai, a great friend of Russia and a permanent participant in the Conference who flew to Moscow so he could be here with us today.  

I would also like to say a special “thank you” to our traditional partners, the Russia–China Friendship Association and CREON Group, which have made a significant contribution to the organization of the Conference.

        We are also grateful to our partners for their help in holding the Conference – LUKOIL, the International Foundation of Technology and Investment and the Russian Peace Foundation.

I am confident that our work at this year’s Conference will be constructive, fuelled by an atmosphere of creative discussion, and will provide an opportunity to formulate interesting ideas and original approaches to the further progressive development of relations between our two countries.

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Poll conducted

  1. Korean Peninsula Crisis Has no Military Solution. How Can It Be Solved?
    Demilitarization of the region based on Russia-China "Dual Freeze" proposal  
     36 (35%)
    Restoring multilateral negotiation process without any preliminary conditions  
     27 (26%)
    While the situation benefits Kim Jong-un's and Trump's domestic agenda, there will be no solution  
     22 (21%)
    Armed conflict still cannot be avoided  
     12 (12%)
    Stonger deterrence on behalf of the U.S. through modernization of military infrastructure in the region  
     4 (4%)
    Toughening economic sanctions against North Korea  
     2 (2%)
 
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