Russia-China trade worth $A122b: Putin

Russian President Vladimir Putin says trade with China has been rising by 30 per cent annually.

Russia has been strengthening ties with neighbouring China in recent years as its relations with the West have plummeted due in large part to the Ukraine crisis.

Trade turnover amounted to $US87 billion ($A122 billion) last year and is expected to reach $US100 billion this year, Putin told Chinese President Xi Jinping at an economic forum in the far-eastern Russian port city of Vladivostok, about 50km from the Chinese border.

"The largest delegation is from China, almost 1000 people," Putin said, according to a transcript posted on the Kremlin's website.

Russia has a "trusting relationship" with China, "in politics, security and defence," he said during the meeting.

Xi in turn described Putin as his "dear friend" and attested to the development of close ties between the two countries.

Tuesday's talks coincide with the start of Russia's biggest war games since the fall of the Soviet Union which China will also take part in.

At least 300,000 troops, 36,000 vehicles and 1000 aircraft will take part in the Vostok 2018 exercises, according to the Russian Ministry of Defence.

They'll be joined by thousands of troops from China and Mongolia, which the Chinese Defence Ministry insisted wasn't "directed against any third party" and would focus purely on "defences, firepower strikes and counterattack."

The exercises will be held from September 11 to 17.

Australian Associated Press