BEIJING, December 26. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin will become a key guest and participant of the second international Belt and Road Forum due in April 2019 in the Chinese capital of Beijing, Russia’s Ambassador to China Andrei Denisov said on Wednesday.
"We believe that a major event of the first half of 2019 will be the coordinated visit of Russian President Vladimir Putin to China, who will take part in the second summit of the Belt and Road Forum," Denisov said.
"According to the Chinese partners’ preliminary estimates, some 40 heads of state and government are expected to arrive, and the forum will have a rather large program and various meetings will be held. They tell us that the Russian president will be a key guest and the most important participant among foreign guests, that’s why the program for him will have a special character and will envisage events as part of his visit to China," the ambassador stressed.
The diplomat noted that the details of the Russian leader’s visit to China were being coordinated. "Both we and our Chinese colleagues want him to visit not only Beijing. But this depends on the work schedule of both our president and our Chinese partners," Denisov said.
The Belt and Road Initiative unites the Silk Road Economic Belt and 21st Century Maritime Silk Road projects, which were proposed in September 2013. It stipulates the signing of bilateral memorandums on cooperation with states located on transport Eurasian routes (more than 40 documents have already been signed), along which "economic development corridors" will be established.
The first Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation was held in Beijing in May 2017. It involved 29 heads of state and government, as well as leaders of major international organizations.