Beginning of a Meeting with President of Venezuela Hugo Chavez 2008-07-22 13:30:15 Meiendorf Castle, Moscow Region President of Venezuela Hugo Chavez: How are you? President of Russia Dmitry Medvedev: I'm fine, Mr President. I am glad to welcome you and get acquainted with you. Thank you for your best wishes on my election. I just want to say that recently contacts and relations between Russia and Venezuela have become not just stable but very dynamic. This can be seen in the very impressive growth of trade in different areas, even though we have yet to engage in efforts to optimise trade. The cultural component of our relations and our cultural ties has become more and more multifaceted. And, finally, our relations have become a key factor in ensuring security in the region. I am glad to welcome you again to Moscow and I am looking forward to productive negotiations and close cooperation. Hugo Chavez: Thank you very much, Mr President. Let me reiterate our congratulations on your election. I am confident that your election will guarantee security and allow us to move forward with our plans. We are watching the resurgence of Russia with the greatest respect and affection. This is the sixth time that we have been to Moscow. And what a beautiful day it is today, perhaps the most beautiful day that I have ever seen. We arrived at 10 am and it is still morning. We want the years that lie ahead to be the most productive for us: for Russia, Venezuela and the whole world. I think that you yourself are well aware that the world today is going through a difficult period. There is the financial crisis, the energy crisis, the environmental crisis, the food crisis and the moral crisis as well. And, as Fidel says – he wrote me recently and incidentally he asked me to welcome you, and many other friends in Latin America welcome you too — Fidel says that there is a sanity crisis in some places in the world, especially in the most powerful countries. Fortunately, Russia has once again restored reason and common sense. I read your speeches, Mr President, and fully share your vision, especially in those documents in which you lay out Russia's foreign policy.