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Russia and Greece intend to strengthen inter-regional cooperation

Economic Greece and Russia cooperation in the conditions of sanctions reduced, but its development has mechanisms and emphasis should be placed on inter-regional cooperation, and more active involvement of compatriots to business with Russia, participants of the round table "Trade and economic ties between Russia and Greece: The role of the diaspora and regional cooperation. "

The discussion was organized by the Greek-Russian Chamber of Commerce and the Greek-Russian club "Dialogue" at the Russian Centre of Science and Culture. His opinion on the current state of trade and economic relations between the two countries and ways to deepen expressed diplomats, businessmen, scientists, representatives of regional authorities.

Regions and Diaspora

"The current cooperation between Russia and Greece is based on pragmatism and trust We appreciate the progress level of partnership and share the conviction that the potential of our business and humanitarian ties is far from exhausted." - Said the first secretary of the Russian Embassy in Athens, the representative of the Ministry of Economic Development in Greece Irina Sankova .

According to her, cross-year Russia and Greece gave impetus to the development of relations, but it is hampered by European sanctions and the response the Russian embargo.

"Before the sanctions on Russian table was a large number of Greek fruits, dairy products, fish and excellent Greek wine. Unfortunately, 2014, two consecutive years of continued reduction of bilateral trade. In 2014, he fell in value by 40%, in 2015 year - reasons to 34% -. drop in energy prices, currency fluctuations, as well as anti-Russian sanctions imposed by the European Union and, as a result, our response ", - said Sankova.

"Many of our friends are sincerely sorry that Greece joined the EU as part of sanctions against Russia, We think that you need to look for opportunities to break the deadlock, to find ways to expand trade in today's geopolitical realities.", - The representative of the Ministry of Economic Development said.

Mechanisms for cooperation is, they are fully functioning effectively, and one of these is the Russian-Greek joint commission on economic, industrial and scientific-technical cooperation, Sankova said.

"In July this year the launch of the working group on inter-regional cooperation within the framework of the Joint Commission is planned in Greece", - she said.

Sankova invited to cooperate actively connect business structures compatriots.

"For his part, Trade and Economic Section of the Embassy is ready to assist novice exporters and provide information on possible partners in Russia", - said Sankova.

Head of Relations with Compatriots of the RF Ministry of Foreign Affairs Department of the department Alexander Kopnin said that Russia interested in the experience of ethnic diasporas in other countries, such as China, South Korea, Ireland, Poland and Hungary, which are actively connected to the compatriots implementation of strategic economic initiatives.

"We are also trying to work with entrepreneurs to build-nationals who reside outside of Russia", - said Kopnin.

According to him, compatriots better than others, understood the possibilities and limitations that are characteristic of Russian business in a particular country.

"In Russia now to promote non-oil exports are insurance and credit mechanisms to support recently formed Russian export hub, in fact -. Is a specialized organization, service one-stop shop, which is a mechanism to provide financial and organizational assistance to Russian exporters This is an open fresh ideas and. offer of the company ", - said Kopnin.

"We will try, together with compatriots to facilitate and create in Russian-speaking countries of the Association of Entrepreneurs of residence, which are focused on the promotion of Russian exports," - said the representative of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The nature of competition in the Russian market is changing

Greece as a country included in the European institutions, has a number of obligations that hinder the deepening of cooperation with Russia, and on the trade relations between the two countries affected the relations between Russia and the EU, NATO and the United States, said Professor of Economics University of Thrace Dimokritosa Dionisis Honis.

"Greece is in a situation where it can not bridge the gap relations between the EU and Russia, it can not be isolated from the political partners It may, however, cooperate with Russia in the energy and tourism." - Says Honis.

According to him, the crisis in Ukraine dropped 2014 years, relations between Russia and the West in the Cold War, and the sanctions have caused damage to economic relations.

"Unfortunately, Greece, which is under the memorandum (with international creditors), can not create their own communication", - said Honis.

He said that Greece is losing the currently available opportunities to return to the Russian market.

"What's bad for the Greek economy is now, what challenges? That, as I see it, the Russian economy after the embargo has replaced many agricultural products export from Greece for its products from the south of Russia. And if the normalization of relations between Greece and Russia drags on, we both exporter will see the replacement of export products to the Russian Russian economy, Russian authorities used the embargo and have created their own products and I am not very sure that it will have such a great need for Greek products, "-.. the professor said.

Honis also said that Greek public opinion in Russia has always been a country that could help find a solution to the complex problems, such as the Cyprus problem, the problem of the Aegean Sea.

Honis believes that the nature of the EU is changing, the economic and monetary union in 2017-2018 year will no longer be so, as we know it, it becomes a union of "two speeds". According to him, Greece in these conditions it is necessary not only to look for new trading partners, but also to establish a dialogue with Moscow.

"Thanks to the EU for sanctions!"

European sanctions have given impetus to the economic development of the regions of the Russian economy, said the head of the Sochi adviser Andrei Kovalev during the presentation of the economic potential of Krasnodar region to Greek entrepreneurs.

"The impetus for the development of the food industry in the territory of the region was the reciprocal sanctions imposed on Russia and responding to Western products.Through this, the production of fruit and vegetable products has increased at times in the territory of the region, which allows meeting the needs of the Russian Federation.If before, most cucumbers and tomatoes were imported from Turkey and partly from Greece, even potatoes from Egypt were brought, now our agro-industrial enterprises grow them independently and can even supply their own products for export, "Kovalev said.

According to him, there is an interest to cooperate in the production of fishery products, since the sanctions after Russia stopped imports of fish from European countries.

"We formed the company after the sanctions on the artificial cultivation of fish, but the natural, of course, preferable, especially since consumers in Russia has become quite picky about quality", - said Kovalev.

According to him, the second sensitive area, in which the sanctions hit, is the production of cheese. "If before the cheese were imported from France, Switzerland, and now we do not have them, we produce them on their own, but the quality, unfortunately, insufficient We need joint ventures for the production of cheeses..", - Said adviser to the head of Sochi.

In an interview with RIA Novosti after the "round table" Kovalev thanked the authorities of the European Union to impose sanctions.

"In principle, we are self-sufficient and provide themselves with the products that we need on this constantly told our top officials, the government, which imposed sanctions instead of us lick, contributed to the development of our economy can be said -.. Thank the EU for sanctions" - said Kovalev.

According to him, nobody hides that if the sanctions will hold a few more years, then it will benefit Russian agriculture.

Russia and the West have deteriorated over the situation in Crimea and Ukraine. In late July 2014, the EU and the United States from the point of sanctions against certain individuals and companies have moved to the measures against entire sectors of the Russian economy. In response, Russia restricted imports of food products from countries that have imposed sanctions against her: USA, EU, Canada, Australia and Norway.

Moscow has repeatedly stated that he considers absurd to link the sanctions of the West with the implementation of the Minsk agreements on Ukraine, since Russia is not a party to the conflict and the subject of internal Ukrainian agreements on the settlement. Also, Moscow has repeatedly said that to speak with the Russian language of sanctions is counterproductive.

A source: RIA News

Author: Gennady Melnik

Tags: Greece, Economy, Russia, Politics, International Relations, Sanctions, Trade, EU

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