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    China-Russia Cooperation to 'Be Equally Auspicious in the Future'

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    China's new commerce minister predicted an auspicious cooperation between Beijing and Moscow in the future.

    BEIJING (Sputnik) — Cooperation between China and Russia is currently very successful and will continue to develop in a similar manner in the future, new Chinese Commerce Minister Zhong Shan said Saturday.

    "Bilateral cooperation between Russia and China is developing very successfully at the moment and both sides are very pleased. It will be equally auspicious in the future as well," Zhong said during the ongoing National People's Congress 10-day meeting.

    The two countries have a variety of tools at their disposal, which have played in important role in developing cooperation, he added.

    The annual session of China's legislative body opened earlier this month alongside the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), which is the country's top political advisory body. The twin events brought together some 3,000 lawmakers and 2,000 CPPCC members and are taking place ahead of the 19th Communist Party of China (CPC) National Congress due later this year, with which major leadership changes are expected amid growing problems in China's economy.

    Zhong Shan became the new commerce minister instead of Gao Hucheng in late February.

    Trade between Russia and China grew 2.2 percent in 2016 and came to $69.525 billion, the latest data by China's General Administration of Customs showed. Russian-Chinese trade revived last year after a decline in 2015.

    The two countries have been working on improving transport and postal service links as well as looking into ways of integrating various regional economic initiatives. In June, the sides agreed to start formal talks on coupling the Russia-led Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) and China's pan-Eurasian One Belt, One Road initiative.

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    Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), Communist Party of China, Zhong Shan, China, Russia
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