President Vladimir Putin: Dear Romano, I am happy to see you here in Sochi. As I already said, I came here specially, knowing that it would be easier for you to come to this part of Russia following your visit to Turkey. I also said this yesterday to the German chancellor, Mrs Merkel. She asked me to pass on her best wishes and her thanks for the fact that, thanks to you, she was also able to come to Sochi and spend time in this particular part of the country.
I would like to begin by saying that we are happy with the way our bilateral relations are developing. Not only is our trade growing but we are opening up new areas of cooperation and coming up with new projects. We are working together increasingly effectively in sectors of great importance for our countries and for all of Europe. One of these sectors is, of course, the energy sector. I also see it as very important to have an exchange of views with you on current issues on the international agenda.
I am pleased to see you. Welcome!
Italian Prime Minister Romano Prodi (Translated from Italian through Russian): Thank you. I am also very pleased to have the opportunity to meet here in a place where we have not yet met. It is nice to have this chance to see your second residence and see where you spend time when you are not in Moscow.
We do indeed need to exchange views on various issues because there are a great many questions that must be resolved.
On the international stage, we need to act and make use of various means to establish peace in parts of the world that are in danger.
What we need is not just active bilateral but also multilateral cooperation. Only through multilateral cooperation can we achieve a positive outcome for various issues before us.
The world is in need today of resolute action to restore peace to places where there is no real peace at present. There is a huge demand for effective solutions to the problems our world faces today and I think that if we work together and approach these matters with seriousness and patience, we will find the means that will enable us to resolve these problems.
Our bilateral relations are showing excellent development and there is nothing we can add in this respect. Perhaps the most we could do is simply increase our common action even more and perhaps use this as the starting point for making use of the immense energy that binds Russia and Europe, Russia and Italy and Europe and Italy.
I want to mention the energy sector in particular, because it could become the foundation for our cooperation and lay the base for our scientific, economic and even cultural relations and for our work to expand them and deepen them.
I want to say that Italy makes tremendous effort indeed to strengthen relations within the European Union, and the European Union should become a stable, trusted and principle partner for Russia.
Bilateral policy, European policy and international policy should therefore be based on this foundation, if I can put it this way, on the relations that have developed between our two countries.