BEIJING, 25 April (BelTA) - China can always count on the support of Belarus in every area, Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko said as he met with Chinese President Xi Jinping, BelTA has learned.
“Today when trade disputes are aggravating and when some countries show reluctance to see China growing strong it is especially evident who is a true friend or, as they say in China, an all-weather friend. Belarus has never doubted the correctness of the initiatives you pursue. China can always count on our support in any area. Likewise, we are always sure of support from your side,” the Belarusian leader said.
Aleksandr Lukashenko underlined that he is happy to meet Xi Jinping again and wished every success to the Second Silk and Road Forum. “Thanks to you, this format has become a useful and much needed platform for regular meetings of like-minded people,” the Belarusian president said.
He also extended greetings to the Chinese president and people on the occasion of the 40th anniversary of Reform and Opening-Up, which the country marked in 2018, and the 70th anniversary of the founding of the New China, which is celebrated this year. “Being a guarantor of the party's stability and China's development in today's unpredictable world, your role in these political and economic successes is obvious,” the head of state said.
Aleksandr Lukashenko hailed the results of the joint work to promote bilateral cooperation. In 2018, the trade in goods and services between Belarus and China reached almost $4.5 billion. Thanks to the access to the Chinese market, China International Import Expo, development of railway routes, Belarus' export of agricultural and food products to China rose 4.5 times within a year, that of dairy products nine times.
In turn, Xi Jinping stressed that over the past six years since the Belt and Road was launched, the cooperation to implement it has been successful. “The Great Stone industrial park has become one of the exemplary projects of our cooperation,” the Chinese president said.
He added that he is ready, together with Belarus, to tap into the opportunities of cooperation within the framework of the Belt and Road project with a view to improving bilateral relations for the benefit of the peoples of Belarus and China.
Xi Jinping also praised Belarus' big successes in state construction and economic development.
The documents on bilateral cooperation were signed at the end of the meeting in the presence of the heads of state. They include an intergovernmental agreement on international road transport of passengers and cargo. The parties also put signatures to the concept of the forum for regional cooperation and development within the framework of the Belt and Road initiative.
After the signing ceremony Xi Jinping showed Aleksandr Lukashenko the layouts of a football stadium and a swimming pool which the Chinese side wants to gift to Belarus. As BelTA has reported, China shall allocate gratuitous assistance to build the national football stadium and an international-class pool as is provided in the agreement on technical and economic assistance.
The heads of state also exchanged gifts. Xi Jinping gave Aleksandr Lukashenko a blue and white porcelain vase.
The Belarusian leader gave his Chinese counterpart several books with Belarusian proverbs translated into Chinese and also four books with works of Chinese poets translated into Belarusian. Xi Jinping was also happy to receive a painting depicting the village where he lived for several years. “This is a special place for me. I developed professionally there. This is a very good gift,” he said. China Vice President Wang Qishan lived in a village some 100km away from the place, Xi Jinping said. The Chinese president also received a basket full of Belarusian products well-known in China.
After the meeting with Xi Jinping in Beijing Aleksandr Lukashenko met with China Vice President Wang Qishan who said that the leaders of Belarus and China have established the iron-clad brotherhood that never rusts. He also addressed kind words to the Belarusian head of state and remembered their meeting during his visit to Belarus.
Aleksandr Lukashenko, in turn, thanked Wang Qishan for the kind words. “I remember our meeting in Belarus and I am very happy that we met thanks to our common friend Xi Jinping,” the Belarusian leader said.
The president noted that his meeting with Xi Jinping was more ceremonial in view of the large number of meetings of the Chinese president with foreign leaders who arrive in Beijing for the Second International Belt and Road Forum. Aleksandr Lukashenko stressed that the parties outlined major areas of bilateral cooperation and signed important interstate documents. “During my visit we will sign more than 20 joint agreements,” the head of state said.
“Of course, we had no time to discuss many issues during the meeting, but I told him [Xi Jinping] that I was meeting a good friend of mine and his [Wang Qishan] and I would tell him everything about the Belarusian-Chinese relations and other matters,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said.
A number of agreements were signed in different areas as part of the Belarusian president's visit. The documents included an intergovernmental agreement on technical and economic assistance, and also an agreement between the State Customs Committee of Belarus and the China General Administration of Customs on mutual recognition of the program of Belarus' authorized economic operators and the program of China's on bonafide management.
Memorandums of understanding were signed between the Belarusian State Committee for Standardization and the State Administration for Market Regulation of China in standardization, conformity assessment, metrology and accreditation and also between the Belarusian Healthcare Ministry and the State Administration of Traditional Chinese Medicine. A memorandum of understanding was also concluded between the State Customs Committee of Belarus and the China General Administration of Customs to strengthen partnership for prompt improvement of customs operations in respect to goods as part of trans-Eurasian railway container hauls.
The Belarusian Agriculture and Food Ministry and the China General Administration of Customs signed a protocol on veterinary and sanitary requirements to supplies of dairy products to China.More about President