15 june 2011

Prime Minister Vladimir Putin meets with Executive Secretary of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe Jan Kubiš


Transcript of the beginning of the meeting:

Vladimir Putin: Mr Executive Secretary, I'm very pleased to see you. The UN Economic Commission for Europe has a very important mission and we are very glad that we have developed good contacts with you.

Jan Kubiš: Thank you.

Vladimir Putin: This applies to energy efficiency as well as measures to improve the legal foundation.

It is very important for us that in April of this year, under your aegis and with your participation, agreements were reached on developing relations between the commission and the executive body of the Customs Union. We attach great importance to integration processes in the former Soviet Union and are ready to use all your experience connected with supporting integration in the world in general and the post-Soviet space in particular.

We intend to continue our cooperation and will fully support your efforts toward economic and social development in Central Asia. This is a major priority for us, for Russian foreign policy and for the economy. I'm referring to the importance of our cooperation with Central Asian republics to the Russian economy itself.

As for the power industry, we are very interested in your work on energy efficiency and alternative energy sources, which is of considerable interest to Russia, and I'd like to assure you of our continued support and cooperation. You know about our plans to develop the energy infrastructure, particularly our efforts to build pipelines in the north and south of Europe. Some of these projects are already nearing completion, while others are in the designing stage or have just been launched. At any rate, there is a place for our extensive range of cooperation. We are very glad that we have developed such good relations and we are fully committed to supporting them in every way.

Incidentally, quite recently I visited Bratislava, your homeland, where we had very good contacts with Slovakian leaders. Building relations with the European Union is another important area of our work. You know that we are discussing signing an agreement on a free trade zone. This entire set of issues is of great interest to us, and we hope to develop these relations with your expert support.

Jan Kubiš: Mr Prime Minister, first of all, thank you very much for giving me an opportunity to meet you and describe the work of our commission. This is a rather technical level of the UN, but it is still very much a part of the UN system. This is the first point that I'd like to emphasise in the course of our cooperation, which is very practical, pragmatic and solid. These are not big gestures, but rather many small but very specific actions that work in support of the UN system. This is very important, as the role of the UN in international relations is at times a topic of debate for us. The work of our economic commission is especially helpful with respect to economic issues relating to economic and sustainable development.

We are members of a large UN system, and therefore the support of Russia is very helpful not only to our commission, but to the UN system as well. On behalf of the commission, I'd like to thank the Russian Federation and its leaders for their tremendous support of our work -- political support, financial support and their help in working with Russian authorities. Without reading out the whole list, I can say that we have excellent business relationships with the Transport Ministry, the Ministry of the Interior (on traffic safety and other issues), the Energy Ministry, the Foreign Ministry (our main partner) and the Ministry of Agriculture (with which we are going to develop various forestry programmes). We are working with a large number of departments on specific technical issues associated with international legal agreements, regulations and standards.

The common economic space that contains our countries, as well as the United States, Canada, the EU, the Balkans, Turkey, Israel, Russia, the Central Asian states, and other countries, is a large platform for economic integration, and to some extent, for the formation of common legal norms, standards and regulations. This is very good for the economy.