In 2001 the commodity turnover between Russia and Ukraine may amount to USD 11-12 billion. This is the opinion of Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov which he spelled out Tuesday upon the completion of the session of the Russian-Ukrainian intergovernmental commission, which resumed its work after a two-year break. According to Kasyanov, the commodity turnover growth in trade between Russia and Ukraine accounts for 15 percent. Ukraine ranks second in Russia's trade in terms of volume and first in terms of significance, the premier noted. "Russia believes that the 'heap' of problems have been settled and we came to development of economic and political relations, industrial cooperation and humanitarian cooperation," the premier said. The sides reached an agreement to hold the commission's sessions every six months and the Ukrainian side proposed to hold the next one in Kiev in July 2002. Kasyanov stressed that Russia and Ukraine have agreed to specify the existing bilateral programmes in aircraft construction, as well as develop a programme for aircraft replacement in Russian and Ukrainian airlines. This will allow to coordinate efforts in introducing new types of aircraft. The session also considered issues of military and technological cooperation. Kasyanov stressed that all the issues concerning this topic should be settled by mid-February "in order that enterprises could reckon on support of our governments." Among the issues of humanitarian cooperation Kasyanov noted the holding of the "Year of Ukraine" in Russia in 2001. He called it a "symbolic event."
Chinese military experts are confident that there are only three countries of the world - Russia, the United States and China - that are capable of developing and building fifth generation fighter aircraft