President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Madam Chancellor, please allow me to warmly welcome you to Moscow!
I hope that this will not be our last meeting. I am pleased to say that during these past years we have worked well with both the previous and current German government.
Over six years, trade between Russia and Germany has increased three and a half times to 50 billion dollars (it was more than 50 billion last year). And we have developed good relations in other areas as well.
Continuous political contacts are taking place at all levels: relations are developing between civil society organizations and in the educational and cultural spheres.
Germany is one of our most important partners in Europe and the world.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel (as translated from Russian): Thank you very much.
I am very glad to be here today. I have already said that the phrase ”farewell visit“ seems strange to me. But we will still have the opportunity to talk today and, first and foremost, to elaborate a vision for the future.
I believe that relations between Germany and Russia are very close. These close relations between Germany and Russia concern political contacts, such as the Petersburg Dialogue, as well as economic relations in completely different sectors.
I must say that we have already met many times during my tenure and have found a way to talk honestly and openly about different things, different issues, and even sensitive issues. I must say that very often this is a great pleasure for me, but very often it is a great challenge as well.
I think that Germany and Russia, just like Europe and Russia, must work together. They simply must cooperate. Therefore, they need to find appropriate ways to do so. The world is full of problems and this is also true of the future.