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China upbeat on trade growth with Russia

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Chinese Vice Minister of Commerce Yu Guangzhou said the Sino-Russian trade relations have experienced fast and steady growth and promised to take concrete measures to achieve the targets set by the leaders of the two countries.

Yu told People's Daily Tuesday that the trade between China and Russia hit the record of 29.1 billion US dollars in 2005 which was an increase of 37 percent over the previous year. The volume over the first two months of this year reached 4.3 billion US dollars, soaring 38 percent.

Besides that, the cooperation on investment and economic and technological ties are also striding ahead.

The leaders of the two countries expect bilateral trade of 60 to 80 billion by 2010 and China investment of 12 billion US dollars in Russia by 2020.

Yu specified six measures to be taken to materialize that vision, including improving trade quality with higher share of electromechanical products, standardizing the trade order, as well as upgrading the border trade and facilitating the trade.

He made commitments on cooperation on energy and resources development to achieve a win-win result, more collaboration on hi-tech. He also hopes the two sides work more closely together on financial sector and improve the trade service system.

He highlighted the four major factors that manifested and would underpin the China-Russia economic and trade partnership.

Firstly, China and Russia are both recognized as the world fastest growing economies and expect to double the GDP by 2010. The prospect of the sustainable economic growth, rising consumption, and brisk investment will represent vast possibilities of the two-way flow of goods, resources, technologies and capital.

Secondly, the two economies are industrially complementary. Russia enjoys comparative advantage on natural resources, energy and high technology while China has advanced industries of textile, home appliances, communication and developed a relatively high level of commercialization of sci-tech research results. That makes it possible for the two sides to exploit the advantages through various kinds of cooperation to boost the industries.

Thirdly, a sound mechanism of cooperation is in place. The two nations enjoy very good political relations. Heads of the states meet annually. Premiers meet regularly. The commission for the regular meetings between premiers has ten sub-commissions on energy, economy and trade, sci-tech, transportation, nuclear energy, banking, aerospace, communication, environmental protection and civil aviation technology.

There is also platforms facilitating consultation on issues of investment, trade order, trade disputes, border trade and local level economic and trade ties, as well as the forestry development and exploitation. Contacts have also been made between key sectors or guilds from the two countries.

Last but not the least, the economic and trade cooperation are built on solid legal foundation and the environment of investment and trade are improving. The two governments have signed dozens of legal documents to consolidate the bilateral economic and trade ties, such as a protocol on the economic and trade relations and an agreement on avoiding dual taxation practice. The agreement on investment protection is under discussion and expected to be inked soon.

China has made positive efforts on honoring its commitments on opening its market and improved the fairness and transparency of the business environment since it joined WTO. Russia is tendering for the WTO membership and working hard on building a favorable marketplace.


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