The opening ceremony of the "Sino-Russian Youth Friendly Exchange Year" was held on March 28 in St. Petersburg, Russia. Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin each sent a letter of congratulations.
In his letter, Xi Jinping said that, "President Putin and I jointly decided to hold the ‘Sino-Russian Youth Friendly Exchange Year.’ Year 2014 is a ‘Sino-Russian Youth Friendly Exchange Year’ and year 2015 will also be a ‘Sino-Russian Youth Friendly Exchange Year.’" The initiative will promote the comprehensive strategic partnership between China and Russia at a high level and will promote the China-Russia friendship for the coming generations. The leaders of the two countries have undertaken this major initiative with an eye toward long-term bilateral relations.
In his letter, Putin expressed that large humanitarian events such as Russia’s "Year of China" greatly expand bilateral cooperation in many fields, including education, science, culture, tourism and sports. The "Youth Friendly Exchange Year" will further strengthen the China-Russia comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership.
Source: Xinhua, March 29, 2014