President Vladimir Putin: Your Majesty,
Allow me to wish you a warm welcome to Russia and to Peterhof. First of all, I would like to say that it is not by chance that we are meeting here today. We recall that Nicholas II received your great grandfather here.
We see that you are continuing the traditions of your family, including your great grandfather, who was well known as an explorer. Just recently you made a voyage to the North Pole. We support all of your environmental protection initiatives and the work of the foundation you established not long ago, and I want to say that we will provide all possible assistance in this work.
During the first year of your reign you proposed giving our diplomatic relations fully fledged status. I would also like to thank you for supporting Sochi’s bid to host the 2014 Winter Olympics.
We are very happy to see you. Welcome!
Prince Albert II: Mr President,
First of all, I would like to thank you for this reception and say that it is always with great pleasure that I visit your country. A visit to St Petersburg is always a pleasure and it is always a particularly great joy to be here at St Petersburg’s Summer Palace.
On this particular occasion, however, I have special feelings about being here. For a start, I have such a wonderful guide as yourself, and I am especially happy to be here at Peterhof, all the more so, as you said, because this is the very place where the Russian Tsar, Nicholas II, received my great grandfather, Albert I, in 1913. Secondly, this makes a good occasion for our meeting, an almost historical occasion.
As you noted, the relations between our countries have entered a new quality. This is not due only to the fact that our relations have now been established and given the status of fully fledged diplomatic relations, have been developed and taken to the level of fully fledged diplomatic cooperation.
I am happy to see that there are many opportunities today for cooperation between our countries, be it cultural, economic, or scientific cooperation. I want to stress that this really is extremely pleasing to see.
I just mentioned scientific cooperation between our countries. This cooperation also has roots going back to my great grandfather, Albert I, who worked together with Russian scientists. This cooperation, cooperation with Russian scientists and Russian generals, was very fruitful indeed.
Continuing this historic tradition, I have developed very positive contacts with Russian scientists and all the Russian specialists, including technical specialists, who were marvellous in helping me to organise my expedition to the North Pole last year. I think that this expedition’s success and the fact that it took place are an excellent illustration of the historical tradition of cooperation between our countries, a tradition begun my great grandfather and that continues today.