Vladimir Putin: Good afternoon,
This is our second meeting in this format during the current year. This is not accidental because military-technical cooperation is very important for us in general, and especially at this point in time.
We are all aware of the complex processes taking place in the world today. New regional power centres and new security systems are emerging. A real change is underway in the balance of military-political forces. Military-technical cooperation is for any country, including Russia, a significant and a very effective instrument of influencing these processes.
I must say that the latest measures in this sphere, carried out late last year and early this year, give some grounds for optimism because a stable management structure in the sphere of military-technical cooperation has been put in place, and the legal framework is being improved to bring it in line with world standards and international practice. Today, we can safely say that the foundations of state control in this sphere have been laid in our country, and a degree of order has been restored in military-technical cooperation.
The agenda of this meeting includes two basic documents: the national policy in the field of military-technical cooperation between Russia and foreign states for the period up to 2010 and military-technical cooperation with the member states of the Collective Security Treaty Organisation. Both documents, as I have said, are seminal as they determine the government’s approach to the development of military-technical cooperation. They will provide the basis for the development of long-term military-technical cooperation programmes with individual countries.
I would like to draw your attention to the second document, which lays down the principles of our interaction in the military-technical sphere with the Collective Security Treaty Organisation members. A regular session of the Collective Security Council was held in Yerevan on May 25, and our allies look to Russia to pursue a clear-cut and consistent policy on matters of military-technical cooperation. The main aim of military-technical cooperation in the framework of the Collective Security Treaty Organisation is to contribute to the security of its member states. And indeed, having signed the Collective Security Treaty, the participants must feel that there is a special sphere of relations between the member countries of the organisation. And of course that special sphere is military-technical cooperation.
That is all I wanted to say at the start of our conversation. I suggest now that we get down to business.