Xi: China Will Unswervingly Develop Friendly Relations With Iran

China has always viewed and developed its relations with Iran from a strategic perspective, Xi said
Xi: China Will Unswervingly Develop Friendly Relations With Iran
Xi: China Will Unswervingly Develop Friendly Relations With Iran

Beijing will unswervingly develop friendly cooperation with Iran regardless of how the international and regional situation changes, the Chinese president said. 
“China has always viewed and developed its relations with Iran from a strategic perspective,” Xi Jinping said in a meeting with Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi in Beijing on Tuesday, Xinhua reported.
He applauded the two countries’ traditional friendship and bilateral relations that have withstood the tests of various international vicissitudes.
“In the face of complex changes in the world, times and history, China and Iran have supported each other, worked together to fight the Covid-19 pandemic, consolidated strategic mutual trust and made steady progress in practical cooperation, which has promoted common interests, safeguarded international fairness and justice, and written a new chapter in China-Iran friendship,” he said.
Raisi said the time-tested friendship between Iran and China has become even firmer as time goes by.
“As two independent major countries, the Iran-China relations are based on the spirit of mutual respect, and they are sincere strategic partners worthy of mutual trust,” he said. 
He also stressed that Iran’s commitment to deepening and upgrading Tehran-Beijing comprehensive strategic partnership is unshakeable and will not be affected by any changes in the international and regional situation.
Raisi arrived in the Chinese capital Beijing on Tuesday at the top of a high-ranking politico-economic delegation and was received by his counterpart in an official ceremony, after which the delegations began their negotiations. 
Iran and China signed 20 memorandums of understanding during the meeting chaired by the two presidents. 
The cooperation contracts involved various sectors including crisis management, tourism, telecommunication and information technology, environment, international trade, intellectual property, agriculture, export, health, media, sports and cultural heritage, according to President.ir.
Attending a joint conference of Iranian and Chinese business people, meeting with Iranians residing in China and holding talks with prominent Chinese thinkers are among other plans of the president during his three-day stay. 



Friends in Hard Times  

Raisi later met Li Zhanshu, Chairman of China’s National People’s Congress, where he stressed the importance of parliamentary cooperation in upgrading bilateral ties. 
He described Iran and China as “friends in hard times” and called for continued strategic cooperation between the two Asian states. 
The two sides also highlighted the need for using regional and extra-regional mechanisms to deepen their relations. 
In a separate meeting with Chinese Premier Li Keqiang, the president pointed to the 25-year comprehensive strategic partnership plan as a symbol of the two countries’ will to improve relations and stressed the need for its full implementation. 
He underlined multilateralism as a shared international approach of Tehran and Beijing, calling for closer cooperation within the framework of regional and international organizations. 
The Chinese premier pointed to constructive negotiations between the two countries on various sectors, expressing Beijing’s interest in full implementation of the 25-year plan. 
He also acknowledged the Islamic Republic’s influential role in the region and called for closer cooperation to ensure security. 



Against Unilateralism 

Raisi had told reporters upon departure that his trip was arranged following an invitation by the Chinese president and would center on the implementation of the 25-year strategic partnership plan at the first step. 
He regretted the serious backwardness in developing relations with Beijing, saying it has to be compensated by precisely identifying mutual capacities and efforts to fulfil this potential, especially in economic sectors.  
The president also said Iran and China are two independent countries with shared interests at regional and international levels, which also have common views about international issues, such as their stance against unilateralism and support for political independence. 
Iran’s approved membership in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization can also provide the ground for further expansion of ties with all Asian states, particularly China, according to Raisi. 
With roughly $13 billion worth of trade over the past ten months, China is Iran’s greatest business partner. 
Earlier in December, a meeting was held in Tehran on comprehensive Iran-China cooperation, headed by Iranian First Vice President Mohammad Mokhber and Chinese Vice Premier Hu Chunhua to discuss the implementation of the strategic partnership plan. 
The two sides finalized the details of agreements in energy, joint investment, finance and banking, as well as strategic projects in transit and infrastructure sectors during the meeting, which were eventually signed by the two presidents in Beijing on Tuesday. 

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