SHANGHAI, September 22. /TASS/. The cooperation between Moscow and Beijing continues to strengthen in a progressive manner, notwithstanding the COVID-19 restrictions, Russian Ambassador to China Andrei Denisov said on Wednesday.
"The pandemic has significantly affected all spheres, even diplomacy. However, despite all the restrictions, Russian-Chinese cooperation continues to strengthen in a progressive manner. The majority of contacts went online, the leaders of both countries continue to communicate by phone and through videoconferencing on a regular basis, jointly participating in various summits such as the SCO, BRICS, while the G20 and APEC ones lie ahead, in addition to a wide range of other formats," the ambassador noted.
He stressed that last year, the volume of bilateral trade shrank but not significantly, and a substantial increase was noted in the eight months of 2021. The e-commerce segment has been growing at a higher rate and the share of net settlements in foreign exchange between the countries has been on the rise.
A number of bilateral events are scheduled online till the end of the year, the Russian envoy added. Among them, he mentioned the meeting of parliamentary speakers and prime ministers, which according to him, will be held on November 30, and the meetings of the intergovernmental commissions at the level of deputy prime ministers and a number of sub-commissions headed by ministers.
The battle against coronavirus became the new area of work, the ambassador noted, and amid pandemic "Russian-Chinese relations proved their effectiveness". In spring 2020, Beijing urgently delivered several hundred million units of personal protective equipment, particularly in short supply at that time. That was of particular importance, especially at the early stage before establishing the necessary volumes of adequate production in Russia.