NEWS

Mitsotakis, Putin discuss energy, trade, Eastern Mediterranean

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Talks between Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis and Russian President Vladimir Putin focused on trade, energy, the Balkans and the Eastern Mediterranean, the two leaders said following a meeting at the Russian president’s house in Sochi, Russia on Wednesday.

Putin said in the first nine months of the year, bilateral trade increased by 56%. Russian companies have a strong interest for investing in Greece and “we expect the same response from the respective Greek ones,” he said at a joint press conference with Mitsotakis.

He went on to discuss energy and say that Russia covers more than 40% of Greece’s energy needs. “Russia is fulfilling its obligations to Greece and the EU and will continue its uninterrupted supply of natural gas,” he said.

On Cyprus, he reiterated that Russia supports the solution of a bi-zonal and bi-communal federation.

On his side, Mitsotakis thanked Russia for sending firemen to Greece last summer to help with the devastating wildfires that raged for days, despite the country facing itself large blazes in Siberia,

On energy, Mitsotakis said that Russia “has proven to be a reliable supplier of gas to Greece, just as Greece is a reliable partner.”

“It is important that any [price] adjustments do not deviate significantly from the existing agreement.”

Commenting on EU-Russian relations, he said it is important to continue the dialogue. “I recognize the great challenges, I recognize the need to always keep the channels of communication open. Russia is part of the European Security architecture,” he said.

He also thanked Russia for its position on the Cyprus issue.