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Putin Extols Value Of Growing Trade With China During Xi's Visit

Russian President Vladimir Putin (right) and his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, shake hands during a signing ceremony in the Kremlin in Moscow on July 4.

President Vladimir Putin has praised the importance of growing trade between Russia and China during a meeting in Moscow with Chinese President Xi Jinping.

The state news agency, TASS, quoted Putin as saying on July 4 that trade between Russia and China grew by 37 percent during the first four months of 2017 compared with 3.9 percent growth during 2016.

Putin on July 4 awarded the Chinese president with the Russian government's most prestigious order, the Order of St. Andrew, for his "service in strengthening the friendship and collaboration between the peoples of the Russian Federation and the People's Republic of China.

China's state news agency, Xinhua, reported ahead of Xi's two-day visit that trade between Russia and China grew by 33 percent during the first five months of 2017 to about $32 billion.

Based on reporting by Reuters, dpa, and TASS