China is willing to deepen cooperation with Russia within multilateral frameworks, a foreign ministry official said.
The two countries could enhance cooperation through mechanisms such as the Group of 20 (G20) – a major intergovernmental forum comprising 19 countries and the European Union, Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Ma Zhaoxu said.
Ma made the statement in a conversation with the Russian ambassador to China, Andrey Denisov, the ministry said.
China is also willing to strengthen strategic coordination with Russia and expand practical cooperation in various fields, Ma told Denisov in a meeting on Tuesday.
The statement came as Moscow denied reports that Chinese leader Xi Jinping refused an invitation by President Vladimir Putin to visit Russia.
“This is completely not true,” Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov said, according to state news agency Tass. He said presidential visits would resume after China started gradually lifting anti-pandemic restrictions.
Japanese media reported earlier that Xi had refused Putin’s invitation due to the pandemic.
- Reuters, with additional editing by George Russell