President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Mr President, colleagues, friends, allow me to greet you once again.
I think we had a very good evening together yesterday. Today, you have a busy programme. You just had a meeting with the Russian Federation Prime Minister, and you have meetings ahead with the speakers of the two houses of Russia’s parliament, which will give you the opportunity to discuss all areas of our cooperation.
Our relations have deep roots: next year, we will mark 190 years since our two countries established diplomatic relations.
Brazil is undoubtedly one of our priority, most important partners in Latin America. We work together at all international organisations and, of course, this is particularly true of our collaboration within the BRICS group.
Unfortunately, our bilateral trade underwent a decrease last year, but it has already posted an increase of more than 30 percent over the first four months of this year.
We will have the opportunity to discuss all of these different areas.
It is a great pleasure to see you. Welcome!
President of Brazil Michel Temer (retranslated): Mr President, it is a great pleasure to see you again. If I recall correctly, we last met in India at the BRICS summit. We had a very good discussion that we continued during the dinner, where we were seated next to each other.
This is now my fourth official visit to Russia. I had the pleasure of visiting Russia as co-chair of the high-level commission on cooperation and we had a number of effective meetings in Brazil and in Russia. These meetings produced concrete results that were translated into practical action.
Russia and Brazil have many things in common. Our countries both have vast territories and large populations, and our economies have many similarities as well. During that dinner at the BRICS summit, we discussed these common features of our economies.
One of these common features is that we are conducting a successful fight against inflation. When I became President of Brazil last year, we had an inflation rate of around 10 percent. Now, we have brought it down to 3.6 percent. This, as you would agree, is an impressive reduction.
Another indicator important for both economies is interest rates. When I became President, the interest rate was 14.25, and it is now down to 10.25 percent. We expect that we will be able to bring the interest rate down even further very soon.
Mr President, you have always said that our countries pursue a very frank and open dialogue. We conduct this dialogue within the BRICS group, the G20, and at the United Nations, where we have similar positions on a great many issues.