Ukrainian First Deputy Prime Minister Stepan Kubiv said on Friday that his country is willing to boost its cooperation with China in various areas.

“China is a strategic partner for Ukraine, We have effective tools for strengthening cooperation in order to significantly deepen partnership in key promising sectors,” Kubiv said during a meeting with Chinese Ambassador to Ukraine Du Wei.

Kubiv stressed that the meeting of the Chinese-Ukrainian Intergovernmental Commission and Ukraine’s participation in the Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation this year are instruments to further enhance collaboration between the two countries.

According to Ukraine’s State Fiscal Service, China-Ukraine trade rose 27.1 percent to 9.77 billion U.S. dollars in 2018.

The two countries closely cooperate in such areas as energy, infrastructure and agriculture.

China will host the second Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation in April 2019 in Beijing.