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Russia and Slovakia: "If there is a will, we can find a way to cope with all problems"

09.12.15

The Minister of Economic Development of the Russian Federation Alexey Ulyukaev held a meeting with the Minister of Economic Affairs of the Slovak Republic Vasil Hudak.

There was a talk about the condition of bilateral trade-economy relations and the macroeconomic situation in Russia and Slovakia.

Alexey Ulyukaev noted that Slovakia is one of the top trade-economy partners for Russia in Central Europe during dozens of years. He added that our relations develop in positive course in a lot of directions. However, taking into account a complex situation with the world trade, Russian-Slovak external turnover decreased by 35% in January-October, 2015 and composed 4.6 billion US dollars.

Minister of Economic Development of the Russian Federation underlined that restrictive measures of the European Union which Slovakia was forced to apply, in spite of its negative attitude to them are harmful for businesses. He added that they had a lot of projects of two-side investment cooperation and the countries would continue active dialogue on the different levels.

According to Alexey Ulyukaev, despite of the complex situation in the world, Russia is ready to continue the cooperation and is open for new projects. "We are activating work of intergovernmental commissions with the European Union countries, renew the motivation of business. Investments return to the market of corporate obligations in Russia. This year after the break there were lead meetings of the Russian-Spanish, Russian-Greek, Russian-Hungarian, Russian-Slovak and Russian-Cyprian INCs. We estimate to lead full-format sessions INC with France, Italy, Austria and Belgo-Luxembourg economy union in 2016.

Next year we will plan to hold the Russian-Slovak INC. According to the head of Russian economy department it is necessary to create a work group for priority investment projects." – said the Minister.

 The Minister of Economic Affairs of the Slovak Republic Vasil Hudak points that the Russian Federation is an important partner, and underlines that the interest to the cooperation comes from the both sides. He says that if there is a will, we can find a way to cope with all problems.

According to Vasil Hudak, there are the areas for effective cooperation, specific projects and engaged business. It is planned to create a cluster of   scientific research and startups. And according to him, the experience of Russia with its traditionally high level of clusters is very important.

The Ministers of Economy of two countries discussed perspectives of Russia and the EU cooperation on the meeting. Alexey Ulyukaev pointed that the European Union remains a strategic trade-economy partner which has more than 45% of Russian trade turnover. He informs "Today we can hear confirmations that Russia supposedly turned away from Europe and is finding new business partners, firstly in Asia. It is absolutely not so and we are interested in development of cooperation both with East and with West equally". The Minister underlines that Russia is ready to renew a full format dialogue with the EU countries and feels the same readiness from the European countries.

Participants of meeting discussed the tripartite conversations with Ukraine and the EU for removing of Russian anxiety which rose in connection with implementation of the trade-economy part of the Association agreement with the EU by Ukraine.  The Minister reported that  forming their position Russian negotiators are always based on the need of saving trade-economy cooperation to ensure trade development in region as means of achievement inclusive economic growth. In such a manner, negotiations are led in the area of technical regulation, sanitary and phytosanitary control, customs administration, tariffs regulation, and also in the sphere of energy production and Russian investment maintenance. He added that they have not yet received an acceptable offer under their concernment.

According to him the probability of reaching a compromise until the end of this year under the association Ukraine with the EU is rather small. So Russia will not have a choice except taking measures for protection of its economic interest after the 1st of January. He underlines that as for Ukraine they have all foundations not only to apply the preferential conditions but also to discontinue the actions of preferential mode in the frameworks of the Free Trade Area (FTA) for the CIS.

From 1 June, 2016 till 31 December 2016 Slovak Republic is taking the chair in the EU. The Minister of Economic Affairs of the Slovak Republic Vasil Hudak invited the Minister of Economic Development of the Russian Federation Alexey Ulyukaev to make a working visit to Slovakia next year.

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