Russian President Vladimir Putin said that next year's presidential elections won't affect relations with China, speaking at his annual press conference at the World Trade Centre in Moscow, Thursday. «I have full confidence that cooperation with China is beyond any political agenda and regardless of the election outcome we'll remain strategic partners for a long period of time,» said Putin. He... Еще went on to comment on bilateral ties with Beijing, listing high technology aviation and space among the areas of strategic cooperation. «We have the biggest trade turnover with China, more than 63 billion,» said Putin, adding «so I'm sure we're moving in the right direction, we're fully determined to go that way.» The Russian president named China «one of the major investors» for the $ 27 billion (€ 23 billion) liquefied natural gas (LNG) plant located on the Yamal Peninsula above the Arctic Circle. «There is no coincidence; there is a reason for it. China is interested economically and we will also cooperate on other projects,» he said. The event is Putin’s 13th press conference and is being held in a live question and answer format. Among the accredited Russian and foreign media outlets are AFP, Bloomberg, Xinhua News Agency, CNN and the Guardian. Reporters from regional press outlets, such as Unknown Siberia and Arkhyz 24, will also have a chance to ask questions. Last year 1,437 journalists were accredited for the event, with 48 of them managing to ask their questions. Putin answered 67 questions last year. This year 1,640 Russian and foreign journalists have been accredited. The 2008 press conference is still the longest ever — at four hours 40 minutes. Putin answered 106 questions during that event. The second longest presser was in 2012, lasting four hours 33 min.