The event was held via videoconference.
Deputy Prime Minister Tatyana Golikova and Vice Premier of the State Council of the People’s Republic of China Sun Chunlan co-chaired the 22nd meeting of the Russian-Chinese Commission for Humanitarian Cooperation.
The participants exchanged views on the current state and development prospects in all spheres of humanitarian cooperation. A number of coordinated decisions were adopted following the meeting and formalised in a protocol, which is to be signed during the next regular meeting of Russian and Chinese heads of government on 30 November 2021.
“Russian-Chinese humanitarian cooperation continued to develop steadily in the period since the 21st meeting of the commission despite a very complicated global situation. Participants in humanitarian cooperation maintained contacts and implemented joint projects and events, which remained substantive despite being held online, and attracted the attention of the public in our countries,” Tatyana Golikova said in her welcome address.
The Deputy Prime Minister noted the importance of the continued development of Russian-Chinese cooperative efforts against infectious diseases and the exchange of information about the prospects and achievements in the creation of COVID-19 vaccines during the pandemic. Tatyana Golikova proposed building up international collaboration to exchange information about the new SARS-CoV-2 strains and emphasised the priority goals of the joint training of skilled medical personnel and implementation of research and educational projects.
The main drivers of cultural cooperation in 2021 were large-scale cultural events, such as the Russian-Chinese Culture and Art Fair and the exchange festival of Russian and Chinese culture.
“A rich experience of interaction and a substantial history of successful cultural projects have helped us to maintain an active dialogue in the new conditions caused by the pandemic and closed borders,” Tatyana Golikova pointed out.
The co-chairs expressed their appreciation for the concerts organised by the Bolshoi Theatre of Russia and the National Grand Theatre of China to mark the 20th anniversary of the Treaty of Good-Neighbourliness, Friendship and Cooperation between Russia and China. It was the first time that joint concerts were held via satellites, which allowed tens of millions of people to admire the remarkable performances of the two countries’ best musicians.
Tatyana Golikova said that there was a growing interest in learning Russian in China, where the number of participants in the international academic online contest for Russian as a foreign language is increasing from year to year.
“During the 2020–2021 academic year, the contest involved 796 school students from China, or 200 more than last year,” she noted.
The Deputy Prime Minister expressed certainty that the signing of the Cooperation Agreement between the Orlyonok Russian Children’s Centre and the Chinese Education Ministry’s Centre for International Language Exchange and Cooperation would provide a new impetus to cooperation in the area of children’s health and recreation.
Tatyana Golikova also noted the high performance of the Shenzhen MSU-BIT University, which celebrated its fifth anniversary earlier this year.
“Currently, the university has 1,300 students and postgraduate students attending seven schools. We will support the university’s development, including the implementation of online educational programmes and the opening of research centres on its campus,” she said.
The sides reaffirmed that cooperation in the area of education, cinema, sports, media, archives, and youth policy had not been suspended despite the difficult epidemiological situation in the world and closed borders. Russia and China continued educational exchanges, their joint effort to fight doping and the politicisation of sports, joint media events, the exchange of duplicate documents on the history of Russian emigration to China, and the implementation of programmes promoting youth entrepreneurship and innovations.
The meeting culminated in the signing of the following documents:
The Protocol of the 21st Meeting of the Subcommission for Cooperation in Culture of the Russian-Chinese Commission for Humanitarian Cooperation;
The Protocol of the 21st Meeting of the Subcommission for Cooperation in Healthcare of the Russian-Chinese Commission for Humanitarian Cooperation;
The Protocol of the 21st Meeting of the Subcommission for Cooperation in Sports of the Russian-Chinese Commission for Humanitarian Cooperation;
The Protocol of the 11th Meeting of the Subcommission for Cooperation in Youth Policy of the Russian-Chinese Commission for Humanitarian Cooperation;
The Agreement on Cooperation between the Federal State Budgetary Educational Institution Orlyonok Russian Children’s Centre and the Centre for International Language Exchange and Cooperation of the Ministry of Education of the People’s Republic of China.