South Korean President Lee Myung-bak arrives in Beijing Monday for an official visit that will focus on the North Korean leadership transition following the death last month of longtime President Kim Jong-Il.
During his three-day stay, Mr. Lee is due to meet with his Chinese counterpart, Hu Jintao, Premier Wen Jiabo, and other high-ranking officials.
In a statement Sunday, Mr. Lee's office said "the two presidents are to discuss ways to further develop a bilateral strategic partnership and cooperative measures for peace and stability on the Korean peninsula." They will also exchange views on Asian and global issues.
Both countries are closely watching the situation in North Korea amid fears that a power struggle could destabilize the nuclear-armed country.
Little is known about Kim's chosen successor, his son Kim Jong-un, who was made a four star general last year.
Kim Jong-un had accompanied his father on several trips across North Korea recently and has reportedly involved himself in the country's foreign and domestic policy.