Russian President Vladimir Putin meets China's leader Xi Jinping. Photo: AFP

Russian President Vladimir Putin said Thursday he is happy to attend the Belt and Road Forum to be held in Beijing next month, reports Chinese state media. Putin made the remarks while meeting with Chinese Vice Premier Zhang Gaoli.

Zhang downplayed the notion that China’s much touted One Belt, One Road initiative conflicted with Russia’s Eurasian Economic Union, noting that Chinese President Xi Jinping had reached a strategic consensus with Putin to integrate Russia’s Eurasian Economic Union with the Belt and Road initiative.