Xi’s visit to push China-Kyrgyzstan ties to higher level

Bishkek: Chinese President Xi Jinping’s upcoming visit to Kyrgyzstan is of great significance and is expected to raise bilateral relations to a higher level, Chinese Ambassador to Kyrgyzstan Du Dewen has said.

From June 12 to 14, Xi will pay a state visit to Kyrgyzstan and attend the 19th meeting of the Council of Heads of State of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) in the capital city of Bishkek.

China-Kyrgyzstan relations have maintained a momentum of healthy and stable development over the past 27 years of diplomatic ties between the two countries, Du said in an interview.

The two countries have strengthened political mutual trust, promoted practical economic and trade cooperation and people-to-people and cultural exchanges, and deepened security collaboration, she said.

Interactions between Xi and Kyrgyz President Sooronbay Jeenbekov have guaranteed that bilateral ties keep growing. In June 2018, during Jeenbekov’s trip to Beijing, China and Kyrgyzstan promoted their relations to a bilateral comprehensive strategic partnership. Xi’s trip to Kyrgyzstan and participation in the SCO summit is significant to bilateral relations and the development of the SCO, Du noted.

Kyrgyzstan was one of the first countries to support and actively participate in the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), and the Central Asian country sees the initiative as a great opportunity to promote cooperation and development, she said.

Jeenbekov attended the Second Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation in Beijing in April, when he and Xi agreed to strengthen the alignment of the BRI with Kyrgyzstan’s 2040 National Sustainable Development Strategy.

China has remained Kyrgyzstan’s top trading partner in recent years, and the two countries will create favorable conditions to expand trade ties, Du said.

Both sides will accelerate the implementation of key cooperation projects, including upgrading roads in Bishkek and the agricultural irrigation system overhaul, which are making progress with China’s support, she said.

The two neighbors will step up cooperation at the local level, particularly between border regions, Du said, adding that multiple measures will be taken to promote mutual understanding between the two peoples.

The ambassador said China and Kyrgyzstan shoulder the common responsibility to safeguard peace, security and stability in the region, and they have intensified their partnership in intelligence sharing, joint law enforcement, and crackdown on the “three forces” of terrorism, separatism and extremism, drug trafficking, and cross-border organized crime.

Du also noted that the people-to-people and cultural exchanges are a dynamic aspect of China-Kyrgyzstan ties, helping promote the friendship between the two peoples.