The Presidents discussed the implementation of the economic agreements reached during the recent Russia-US summit. George W. Bush informed Vladimir Putin of the decision taken recently by the US Department of Commerce to grant Russia the status of a market economy. Vladimir Putin welcomed this step towards Russia, which is really a market economy country, and noted that it would give a powerful impetus to the development of bilateral relations. Both sides expressed satisfaction with the progress achieved on major cooperation issues.
In discussing relevant international issues, the Presidents focused on the situation in South Asia. Mr Putin told Mr Bush of the results of his talks with Indian Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Pakistan’s President Pervez Musharraf. Mr Putin and Mr Bush confirmed the similarity of their positions and the intention to coordinate efforts in order to prevent the escalation of the Indian-Pakistani conflict and normalise relations between New Delhi and Islamabad.
Touching on some aspects of preparations for the June G8 summit in Kananaskis, Mr Putin and Mr Bush agreed to continue to discuss issues related to bilateral and international cooperation during their private meeting in Canada.