Putin Interview: China a 'Diplomatic Priority' and 'Our Reliable Friend'

Putin Interview: China a 'Diplomatic Priority' and 'Our Reliable Friend'

On Monday, Russian President Vladimir Putin sat down with Chinese state-media organization Xinhua to discuss the Kremlin’s diplomatic efforts towards China.

Putin was in high spirits. The former KGB operative expressed a willingness to secure an even closer-knit partnership with the Chinese, one that would see enhanced diplomatic and economic interests between the two states.

“China is our reliable friend. To expand cooperation with China is undoubtedly Russia’s diplomatic priority.” The Russian President continued, “I believe the upcoming talks will inject strong impetus to various bilateral cooperation projects, as well as to the deepening of coordination between the two countries in the international arena.”

The Russian President’s priorities for the cooperative efforts consisted of economic, scientific, and technological collaboration between the two states.

On the economic front, Putin strived for furthering cooperation, seeking a win-win scenario. “We are more than clear that the two countries have more potentials to tap and more room to improve,” he said.

On energy, Putin was focused on diversifying his country’s export portfolio. “For Russia, implementing these agreements means diversifying gas supply destinations, while for our Chinese partners … it could be a remedy for energy shortage and helps ecological security,” he said.

Cultural exchanges were observed as a step that could bring the two states closer together. “The young generation of the two countries have become increasingly interested in each other’s history, culture and customs. That’s an objective process, and we will give full support to such process,” said Putin.

The Russian Head of State was excited to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the defeat of Nazi Germany in 2015 with his Chinese companions. “Next year, we will organize a series of events to jointly celebrate the 70th anniversary of victory in both bilateral form and within the framework of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization,” he stated.

Putin’s remarks come ahead of his travel to Shanghai on Tuesday and Wednesday for the Conference on Interaction and Confidence-Building Measures in Asia (CICA). CICA describes itself as a “multi-national forum for enhancing cooperation towards promoting peace, security and stability in Asia.” CICA’s “basic principles” are explained as “sovereign equality and respect for the rights inherent in sovereignty; refraining from the threat or use of force; territorial integrity of the States; peaceful settlement of disputes; non-interference in internal affairs of States; disarmament and arms control; economic, social and cultural cooperation; human rights and fundamental freedoms.” CICA consists of 24 member countries and nine observer countries.