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Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s news conference on the sidelines of the BRICS and SCO summits in Ufa, July 9, 2015


Question: Chinese President Xi Jinping and President Vladimir Putin had talks on the sidelines of the BRICS and SCO summits in Ufa. They mentioned the issue of joining the Silk Road Economic Belt and the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU). What could you say about the results of their meeting?

Sergey Lavrov: During the summit in Moscow last May, Chinese President Xi Jinping and President Vladimir Putin signed a memorandum on the initiative to join Silk Road Economic Belt projects and the processes of Eurasian economic integration. Naturally, Russia and China are not the only two potential participants in these efforts. This issue concerns the entire EAEU. The initiative put forward by the leaders of our two countries is now being reviewed by our EAEU partners. Both Russia and China believe that SCO is a convenient venue for all the parties concerned to discuss specific aspects of this initiative. Our SCO partners are interested in discussing all aspects of joining Silk Road projects with Eurasian economic integration. Let me repeat that this is not just a Russian-Chinese project. It was suggested by their leaders but must have a multilateral dimension.

Naturally, we’ll inform you about the specific areas of practical work that will be determined by the SCO and during contacts between the EAEU and China. Apart from the SCO, which includes all potential participants of this major initiative, the EAEU and China are also developing their partnership and contacts.  Full story Full Story

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s remarks and answers to media questions at a news conference following the ministerial round of talks on Iran's nuclear programme, Vienna, July 7, 2015


Sergey Lavrov: Another round of ministerial talks on Iran's nuclear programme has come to a conclusion. We compared our notes, noted substantial progress and singled out eight to nine issues that need to be finalised. We issued instructions to our deputies/policy directors, who will follow up on this work over the next couple of days. In the end, I believe that this meeting, just like our meeting in Lausanne, was the right thing to do. The closer the finish line, the more stakeholders are tempted to bargain for more concessions from the other side. This is natural. It happens all the time at any and all multilateral meetings and discussions. Today, we can state the following result — we have come closer still to a final agreement. Clearly, everyone is interested in reaching it. We decided not to set any artificial deadlines for ourselves.

There were previous discussions about July 7 or 9. Nobody is talking about this now — everyone is focused on achieving a quality agreement, and there is every reason to believe that we will get there.

Question: How much time is needed to resolve remaining issues? Do you have a plan?

Sergey Lavrov: No, as I said, we have no artificial deadlines. We agreed to resolve about a dozen issues that will be satisfactory for all parties. Our experts are working on this.

Question: Are you going to return to the talks?  Full story Full Story

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s remarks and answers to media questions at a joint news conference following talks with Minister of Foreign and European Affairs of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg Jean Asselborn, Moscow, July 3, 2015


Ladies and gentlemen,

We have held useful and constructive talks in keeping with the way our dialogue with Luxembourg has always been.

Luxembourg is our longtime partner and a major foreign investor in Russia. We noted the ongoing interest of the business communities of both countries in deepening our cooperation. We welcome the active work of Luxembourg’s industry flagships, such as Paul Wurth in metallurgy, and Guardian Industries, on the Russian market. Recently, Accumalux Russia – a high-tech joint venture – was created in Togliatti. We agreed that we will promote and maintain the interests of our respective business communities in harmonising and implementing new projects.

We enjoy good cooperation in the financial sector.

The contacts between Luxembourg and Russia’s regions, first and foremost the Moscow and Kaluga regions, are expanding. We have good contacts in the sphere of research and education; a cultural exchange programme for the next three years is in the works and will soon be completed.

To our mutual regret, the overall relationship between Russia and the European Union and unilateral sanctions against Russia aren’t helpful for trade and economic ties. Trade between Russia and Luxembourg in January-April 2015 is down more than 30 percent. Exports from Luxembourg to Russia were hit hard. We want to stop these negative trends and to restore positive growth.  Full story Full Story

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