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President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Mr Minister President, colleagues,
I am very happy to see you. Welcome!
I know that you will be meeting with the Moscow Mayor. Moscow and Bavaria have always had very good relations. I must say that I have always had very good, friendly and business-like relations with your predecessors.
This is not by accident; representatives of Bavaria are very active in Russia. In 1995 Bavaria opened a mission in Russia and it has been working quite successfully in a variety of areas since then. It is fair to say that, as far as I know, every fifth German company operating in Russia is from Bavaria. More than half of all big German investments in the Russian economy have been made by companies registered in Bavaria.
I know that Moscow is not your only partner in Russia. Many Russian regions are working with you. We are always happy to see our guests, friends and partners.
Minister President of Bavaria Markus Soeder (retranslated: Thank you very much for your time and the chance to exchange opinions. Actually, Bavaria and Moscow have maintained close relations for 25 years now. These relations remained constant regardless of the political climate, and we are very pleased with that.
This morning I met with Mayor Sobyanin, and I had an opportunity to see the remarkable results that Moscow has achieved in recent years in terms of urban and infrastructure development.
We are interested in expanding economic relations, which are important to us. Economically, we are still Germany’s strongest state. We are investing lots of money and do not want to stop there.
We have an extensive agenda in the hi-tech industry, where we invest in developing artificial intelligence as much as all of Germany at the level of university departments and academia.
In research, we invest a lot in the aerospace industry, because we are – and intend to remain – number one in Germany in this area. We invest a lot in “clean technology,” that is, cars, the environment and climate protection.
Our main goal is to make Bavaria the number one economic powerhouse. That is why, in today's agreement we are focusing so much on promoting economic and research relations. Student and university exchanges are important to us.
In principle, the German and, in particular, the Bavarian economy is still waiting in the wings and wants to achieve much more. So, it is important (and we really hope to see it happen) for our relations, which are already good, to become even better.
For example, resolving major political issues, which you are undoubtedly well aware of, such as the Normandy process that has really taken off, Libya and cooperation in the murder investigation in Berlin will hopefully help us expand our relations even more. We are very interested in establishing and maintaining contacts.
This year, the historical aspect will be important. In addition to economic relations, it is important to be respectful of history and to try to learn from it. So, relations between Germany and Russia, not just Bavaria and Russia, are important.
Let me greet you on behalf of [former Bavarian Minister President] Edmund Stoiber, and, of course, the Federal Chancellor [Angela Merkel] who specially asked me to do this.
Thank you again.