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Chinese ambassador says China, Russia to strengthen digital economy cooperation

Xinhua | Updated: 2017-11-27 13:26

MOSCOW - China and Russia will enhance cooperation on digital economy, including big data, the Internet of Things and smart cities, Chinese Ambassador to Russia Li Hui told Xinhua in a recent interview.

While making continuous efforts to strengthen bilateral cooperation in the sectors of energy, equipment manufacturing, agriculture and spaceflight, the two countries are eyeing digital economy as a new area of cooperation, Li said.

China and Russia will also continue their efforts to achieve substantial results from the alignment of the China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative and development programs within the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) led by Russia.

The Belt and Road Initiative, proposed by China in 2013, aims to build trade and infrastructure networks connecting Asia with Europe and Africa on and beyond the ancient Silk Road routes. It comprises the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road.

The EEU, which groups Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Russia, is an economic bloc aiming to optimize the flow of goods and services among its members.

Li said China and Russia will work to implement the project of an international transportation corridor in the Far East and jointly explore the Arctic shipping route to make it a "silk road on ice."

According to him, strategic mutual trust between the two countries is strengthening, while political, economic and people-to-people exchanges are developing robustly, forming a solid base for the China-Russia comprehensive strategic partnership of coordination.

The partnership plays a special role in China's "major-country diplomacy" with Chinese characteristics and both countries will never waver in their determination to develop such a partnership no matter how the international and regional situations change, Li said.

Both China and Russia are permanent members of the United Nations Security Council and important parties of the G20, BRICS and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), Li said, adding that the two countries share similar positions on many international affairs.

"I believe as long as we keep up with the times and seize the opportunities, China-Russia relations will be very productive," the ambassador said.

Next week, the 16th meeting of the Council of Heads of Government (Prime Ministers) of the SCO will be held in Russia's Black Sea resort of Sochi.

In Li's view, the SCO adheres to its founding values or the "Shanghai Spirit" featuring mutual trust, mutual benefit, equality, consultation, respect for cultural diversity and pursuit of common development.

At the Astana summit in Kazakhstan in June, India and Pakistan completed their accession to the SCO, which also groups China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.

After the expansion, the SCO covers about 44 percent of the world's population and over a fifth of the world's gross domestic product (GDP).

The SCO members have shown a strong will to cooperate in various sectors in the SCO framework, and the Belt and Road Initiative will create new economic propellers for the SCO members and contribute to regional prosperity against a backdrop of globalization, said Li.

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