President of Russia Dmitry Medvedev: Mr President,
I am very happy to have this opportunity to meet with you as part of the official visit you and Mrs Wulff are paying to Russia.
The sheer scale of this visit emphasises the depth and diversity of relations between the Russian Federation and the Federal Republic of Germany. We are very happy to welcome you. In Russia, you will find the warmest, the friendliest reception: in Moscow and Tver, in St Petersburg and Ulyanovsk. And all these cities have a special meaning in the context of your visit.
Our relationship, our strategic partnership is extremely well developed. Germany is our biggest partner in the European Union. We have developed economic ties and special relations between our political agencies, between regional bodies, in civil society, between social organisations of our countries and between political parties. This forms the fabric of our relations. We need to promote cooperation in a wide variety of areas.
Economic ties, as I said, are excellent. But it would make sense to think about enhancing ties in various spheres, including culture, humanitarian cooperation and youth exchanges. Of course it is also vital that our non-governmental organisations continue to communicate with each other and conduct the dialogue that exists today.
I would like to welcome you to our country once again and to wish you a successful stay. I look forward to interesting and productive talks.
President of Germany Christian Wulff (re-translated): Thank you very much, Mr President.
I am very grateful for the hospitality extended to us here in Russia and for the opportunity to get better acquainted with your country and with the Russian people, to see for myself the dynamic development your country is undergoing at the moment and to contribute to the further deepening of our bilateral relations.
Germany and Russia are linked by a long and variable history. We accept your friendship as a great gift to the German nation. The friendliness and interest that we find here in your country, and which exist on the German side as well, show the closeness of our spiritual relationship, if you look at literature, culture and music.
We follow with great interest the events happening in your country and think of ourselves as natural partners in promoting Russia’s modernisation.
We strive to further intensify and expand relations with your country, which are currently in the transformation phase, and to deepen our cooperation not only in the economic sphere but also in education, infrastructure development and creation of administrative bodies that are helpful and understandable for the people, as well as cooperation in human rights protection and culture.
I am confident that we will have many opportunities in the coming days to discuss different aspects of our cooperation.