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China, Russia outline cooperation priorities

Xinhua

MOSCOW - China and Russia on Friday laid out the priorities of future bilateral cooperation and called for a new type of great-power relations in the international arena.

The two neighboring giants articulated their common vision in a joint statement on deepening their comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership inked during Chinese President Xi Jinping's ongoing visit to Russia.

Chart the course for future cooperation

The China-Russia relationship, said the statement, has reached an unprecedentedly high level, not only setting a good example of harmonious coexistence of big countries but playing an important role in promoting regional and global peace and security.

Recognizing that it serves the fundamental interests of both nations to advance their ties, the two countries pledged to push forward their comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership into a new phase and treat the undertaking as a foreign policy priority of both countries.

The strategic task now, according to the statement, is to translate the advantage of the unprecedentedly high level of political relations into concrete cooperation results in economic, people-to-people and other fields.

Accordingly, the two sides have ratified the 2013-2016 implementation guidelines of the China-Russia Treaty of Good-Neighborliness and Friendly Cooperation, and set out the priorities in future cooperation so as to enhance both countries' comprehensive national strength and international competitiveness.

Top on the list is to achieve a balanced development of economic cooperation in terms of both quality and quantity and a more diversified trade structure.

With bilateral trade reaching a record high of $88 billion in 2012, the two countries pledged to further raise the volume to $100 billion by 2015 and $200 billion by 2020.

Meanwhile, the two sides vowed to markedly boost bilateral investment and promote the use of their own currencies in bilateral trade, direct investment and lending.

They will also build a solid strategic cooperative relationship on energy by cooperating actively in the fields of oil, natural gas, coal, electricity and new energy, said the joint statement, adding that they will continue close collaboration in the peaceful use of nuclear energy.

In addition, the two sides agreed to boost cooperation in forestry, agriculture, environmental protection, advanced technologies, aviation manufacturing, cross-border transport and youth exchanges.

Call for new type of great-power relations

On the international front, the two countries accentuated their shared aspirations for a new type of great-power relations.

As globalization picks up pace, the world has entered a transitional period characterized by increasing interdependence and deepening economic and cultural integration, noted the statement.

At the same time, the world remains far from peaceful, and the common tasks of mankind, such as promoting world peace, security and stability, strengthening international cooperation and pursuing common development, have become top topics in international relations, it added.

In light of the enormous responsibility of great powers to maintain world peace and stability, China and Russia made a joint call on big powers to ditch the zero-sum mentality and build a new type of great-power relations featuring long-term, stable and healthy development.

They appealed for concerted efforts to promote peace and stability, pursue common development and prosperity and build a just, democratic and harmonious world order.

On the anti-missile issue, countries should deepen mutual understanding, coordination and cooperation, and tread carefully in the deployment of anti-missile systems and the pursuit of cooperation in this field, said the joint statement.

China and Russia, it added, are opposed to any unilateral and unrestrained building of anti-missile capabilities by a single country or a group of countries, as such moves jeopardize strategic stability and international security.

The international community should jointly cope with missile-related threats and challenges and reject the practice of defending some countries' national security at the price of others', said the joint statement.

Enhance BRICS cooperation

On the economic front, the two countries urged the international community to take all necessary measures to ensure a robust, sustainable and balanced growth of the world economy.

With both being members of the BRICS group, they pledged to help raise BRICS cooperation to a new level at the upcoming fifth summit of the emerging-economy group in the South African port city of Durban on March 26-27.

The two sides agreed that it is of great significance to carry out comprehensive and practical cooperation under the framework of BRICS, which also includes Brazil, India and South Africa.

On the Asia-Pacific situation, the two countries said it is a primary task for the region to build a security and cooperation framework that features openness, transparency, equality and inclusiveness.

They added that it is necessary to encourage relevant countries in the region to properly settle their disputes through bilateral dialogues and negotiations.