Yuri Ushakov reveals details of Xi Jinping's visit to Russia

Yuri Ushakov reveals details of Xi Jinping's visit to Russia

Negotiations between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping will be held on March 20 at an informal closed meeting and on March 21 as part of delegations. This was told to journalists by presidential aide Yuri Ushakov.

On March 17, the Kremlin announced Xi Jinping's state visit to Russia, which will take place on March 20-22. Ushakov reminded that the President of the People's Republic of China indicated in advance his intention to visit Russia immediately after his re-election. “This is his first foreign visit. [после переизбрания], especially a visit with such a high status as a state one. This is a major event in our bilateral relations and confirms the special nature of the Russian-Chinese partnership. And we have no doubt that the upcoming talks will give a powerful new impetus to the development of the entire range of bilateral cooperation,” Ushakov said.

"Most Sensitive Questions"

On Monday, March 20, Rossiyskaya Gazeta and Renmin Ribao will publish articles by the leaders of the two countries: Vladimir Putin in Chinese state media and Xi Jinping in Russian. In these materials, the leaders of the countries will touch upon various issues, including an assessment of bilateral relations. “These articles are an important signal on the eve of the negotiations,” Ushakov said. He noted that Putin's article will describe the approach of Russia and China to the Ukrainian issue.

The assistant to the president told how the state visit would take place. According to him, on March 20 in the afternoon, Putin and Xi will hold a bilateral meeting in a tête-à-tête format and have dinner together.

“We attach great importance to this informal closed conversation, because during it the most important, key, most sensitive issues that relate to the relationship between the two countries, including doing business in the international arena, will be considered,” Ushakov said.

On Tuesday, March 21, the Chinese President will meet with Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin in the morning.

“The main thing is negotiations, negotiations and negotiations”

On the afternoon of March 21, the “presidential program” will begin. Since this is a state visit, members of the delegations will first be introduced to each other in the St. George Hall of the Kremlin, then the heads of state will move to the negotiating hall.

At first, the talks will be held in a narrow format, from the Russian side they will be attended by First Deputy Chairman of the Security Council Dmitry Medvedev (he was recently in China), Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Chernyshenko, Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, Chairman of the Central Bank Elvira Nabiullina, CEO " Roskosmos Yuri Borisov, Director of the Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation Dmitry Shugaev and Russian Ambassador to China Igor Morgulov.

Then talks will be held in an expanded format with the participation of six Deputy Prime Ministers, including Alexander Novak and Dmitry Manturov, as well as Presidential Aide Maxim Oreshkin, Presidential Press Secretary Dmitry Peskov, Minister of Economic Development Maxim Reshetnikov, Minister of Transport Vitaly Saveliev, Minister of Finance Anton Siluanov, head of Rosatom Dmitry Likhachev.

After the talks, the documents will be signed. The leaders themselves will sign two documents - a joint statement by the Russian Federation and China on deepening relations of comprehensive partnership and strategic interaction entering a new era, and a joint statement on a plan to develop key areas of Russian-Chinese economic cooperation until 2030. The joint statements will stimulate the development of trade and economic ties between countries in all directions, Ushakov believes. Currently, more than ten documents on various areas of cooperation are being worked out, which they plan to sign on the sidelines of the visit.

According to Ushakov, all the main topics of cooperation, including energy, will be discussed at the talks. “If Novak is involved, it means energy. Since Siluanov is involved, then [это] means financial matters. <…> The problems of military-technical cooperation will undoubtedly be discussed. Both Shoigu and Shugaev have been invited to talks,” Ushakov said.

Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping will make press statements. And then a state dinner will be held in the Palace of Facets with the participation of delegations and invited figures who are somehow related to the development of bilateral ties. The head of the largest Russian state-owned companies will also take part in this dinner. When asked if the Kremlin was aware of Xi Jinping’s talks with Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky after the talks in Moscow (the Wall Street Journal wrote about a possible online meeting on March 13. – Vedomosti), Ushakov said that the Chinese leader immediately returns to Beijing.

“There will be no additional aggravating protocol features. The main thing is negotiations, negotiations and negotiations. The visit is called a state visit to emphasize its importance, and will be purely business in nature,” Ushakov said. Gift exchange is provided, said Ushakov. “Not very expensive, but symbolic,” he joked.

“In this relationship there is no leader and follower”

Ushakov said that the talks would include a Chinese plan for resolving the situation in Ukraine. “Of course, the conflict in Ukraine will be discussed. We highly appreciate the restrained, measured position of the Chinese leadership on this issue. We know about the Chinese settlement plan. And I am sure that both our leader and the Chinese leader will exchange assessments of the current situation in the context of the development of the conflict in Ukraine. What thoughts will appear after that, we'll see," Ushakov said.

According to him, both in Moscow and Beijing, the state of bilateral relations is satisfactory, they "have reached the highest level in history and, one might say, continue to actively gain momentum." “There is no leader and follower in these relations, there are no restrictions, there are no forbidden measures. We are talking about the strategic interaction of two partners who trust each other and in many respects share the same goals, the same tasks,” Ushakov said. The interaction of countries is “comprehensive”, and the main principles and directions of relations are reflected in the agreement on good neighborliness, friendship and cooperation between the countries of July 16, 2001, which was extended for five years in February 2022, Ushakov recalled.

“In recent years, a special friendly and trusting character has been formed in the personal relations of the leaders of the two countries. We calculated that the leaders met with each other in various formats about 40 times,” Ushakov said. In his opinion, these contacts "are always fruitful and very useful for the practical work of our countries in various fields."

Ushakov recalled that China is Russia's largest trading partner. The volume of trade at the end of 2022 amounted to $185 billion. Its annual growth over the past two years is about 30%. The share of settlements in national settlements is increasing, Ushakov said. “Given this pace, we believe that the goal set by the two leaders – to reach a trade turnover of $200 billion – will be realized not in 2024, as planned, but in 2023,” Ushakov said.

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