European Commission's Moscow representation moves to new office

European Commission Chairman Romano Prodi and Russian Vice-Premier Viktor Khristenko attended, Wednesday, a ceremony of opening a new building of the EC Moscow representation.

The opening of the new representative office a mere two hours before the Russia-European Union summit is very symbolic, according to Mr Khristenko. "This inspires hope for the strengthening of a strategic line toward Russia-EU cooperation," he said.

Russia's representative office in Brussels opened about a year ago, the vice-premier recalled, adding that the opening of the new EC representation in Moscow's heart was a reciprocal move of a sort.

Over the past 11 years, Russia has been undergoing positive changes taking the free market economy road. These changes can bolster further rapprochement between Russia and Europe.

Partnership with Russia is acquiring greater significance for the European Commission, something which prompted expansion of the Russian mission personnel, Silvia Kofler, in charge of the information department of the European Commission's Russian representation, told a RIA Novosti interview.

The EC representation, which has a diplomatic mission status, has been working in Moscow since 1991.

According to Ms Kofler, the Moscow representation is the largest of all the 123 offices of the Commission. Its representative office in Moscow is far bigger than in Washington, for one, she emphasised.

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