Visiting Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin has praised his country’s ties with China, saying relations “are at an unprecedented high level.”
Mishustin made the comment during a meeting Wednesday in Bejiing with Chinese Premier Li Qiang. Mishustin also met with President Xi Jinping, and reports say Xi offered Beijing’s support on Moscow’s “core interests.”
Mishustin said the bilateral relationship is “characterized by mutual respect of each other’s interests, the desire to jointly respond to challenges, which is associated with increased turbulence in the international arena and the pattern of sensational pressure from the collective West.” According to the Associated Press, Mishustin did not mention Russia’s war in Ukraine.
Mishustin and Li signed several agreements involving cooperation on trade services, Russian exports of agricultural products to China, and sports.
Mishustin is the highest-ranking Russian official to visit Beijing since Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine in February 2022. China has become Russia’s biggest customer of oil and gas exports due to sanctions by Western nations in response to the invasion. Russian state media recently said that Russian exports to China will increase by 40% this year.
China has refrained from publicly criticizing Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Beijing maintains it is neutral in the conflict.
The United States has cautioned China against providing military support to Russia for the war.