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President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Ms Federal Chancellor, once again, I wish you a warm welcome to Moscow.
I think our work together today has got off to a good start. I am very pleased to see that the Petersburg Dialogue public forum is developing so well. Now we should talk business a bit.
The practice of holding this kind of bilateral consultations has certainly proven its worth, and I am very pleased to have this chance to discuss the full spectrum of our relations with you and our German colleagues. Overall, we are happy with the way our relations are developing, although there always issues that come up that require particular attention on both sides of course.
Federal Chancellor of Germany Angela Merkel (retranslated): Thank you very much for giving us the chance to come here today to continue our tradition of interstate consultations. The Petersburg Dialogue gave them an excellent and lively start.
We will discuss the full range of issues: economic cooperation, scientific ties, international affairs, and contacts between our societies. We will probably not even have enough time at our disposal, seeing as we have so many international and bilateral matters to discuss.
I enter these talks with the spirit and thought that Germany and Russia have a strategic partnership, and we want this partnership to grow so that our ties will bind us as closely as possible to each other.
Vladimir Putin: Thank you.