Dmitry Medvedev’s meeting with Premier of the State Council of the People’s Republic of China Li Keqiang

Excerpts from the transcript:

Dmitry Medvedev: Premier of the State Council of the People’s Republic of China, Mr Li Keqiang, colleagues and friends, I am delighted to welcome all of you here to St Petersburg.

We have met today for the 24th meeting of the heads of government. I am sure that it will promote the further development of multifaceted cooperation between Russia and China.

It seems like only a short while ago, but it was in November 2018 that we met for talks in Beijing. Today we will continue the talks we started then.

I would like to use this opportunity to convey our greetings and best regards to President of China Xi Jinping.

This is a special year, that of not only the 70th anniversary of the establishment of the People’s Republic of China but also of our diplomatic relations. I would like to remind you that the Soviet Union recognised the People’s Republic of China the very next day after its establishment, on 2 October.

Today we will discuss all topics within our competence, including the economy, energy, our trade cooperation, transport, agriculture, interregional ties and humanitarian matters.

I believe that our meeting today will be extremely useful for our countries and that it will fully confirm the high standards of partnership as well as mutual understanding between our countries.

Once again, welcome to Russia.

Li Keqiang (via interpreter): We believe that, as we approach the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between our countries, we should bring our cooperation up to a qualitatively new level. In June 2019, President Xi Jinping paid a visit to your country. Together with President Putin, they announced a higher level of our strategic partnership.

I am grateful to you, Mr Prime Minister, for forwarding my heartfelt greetings and best wishes to him. Taking this opportunity, I would also like to convey cordial greetings to you from President Xi Jinping.

I can see that Russia and China have a lot in common. Our cooperation is being carried out at a fairly high level. Each of the steps we make provides the basis for us to work together further. I am ready to discuss the specific topics of trade, economic and practical collaboration with you.

We also have the following specific proposals. I think we no longer need any unnecessary explanations about our cooperation, but we must first bring our trade to $200 billion. To achieve this goal, we need to take several steps. At this stage, 70 percent of our trade is in the field of energy, mainly oil and gas. During the previous visit, I said that we need a more integrated format, a breakthrough in the search for a new integrated format in the oil and gas sector.