Dmitry Medvedev: Mr Prime Minister, I would like to wish you welcome once again. I am very pleased to have this opportunity to meet and discuss cooperation between our two countries, all the more so as today is also marked by the ceremony opening the new liquefied natural gas production plant. This is just the kind of good incentive our cooperation needs.
Our bilateral trade is showing steady growth. Looking at last year’s results, it reached a figure of $30 billion, and this is a good result. We think that we need to look at how to expand and develop our trade relations and we pay great attention to the investment projects currently underway.
As far as our political relations are concerned, you and I have regular contact and our colleagues are also in constant contact with each other. I think that this is very positive, because without this kind of dialogue it is impossible to resolve any problems.
We had a meeting in Lima, in Peru, and now we are meeting in Sakhalin here in Russia. Soon we will both go to London for the G20 summit, and then we will certainly meet again at the G8 summit in Italy. This shows that our political contacts have picked up a good and intensive pace.
Once more, it is my pleasure to welcome you here.
Taro Aso (as translated): Mr President, I would like to thank you once again for your invitation to attend this big event, and also for finding the time to meet separately with me.
I am very pleased to see that the Sakhalin-2 project, which is a symbol of Russian-Japanese cooperation, has begun work. Quite a few years have gone by from the time the project was born to its launch now. I think this is an important step in developing Japanese-Russian cooperation in this region.
At this meeting today, I would like to continue discussing with you the subjects of interest to both Japan and Russia that we spoke about during our meeting in Lima last November.