Russia eager to step up cooperation with EU

Moscow is ready for more intensive defence and foreign political contacts with the European Union, Igor Ivanov, Russia's Minister of Foreign Affairs, said following talks with his Danish counterpart.

Russia attaches great significance to cooperation with the EU and regards it as one of its foreign policy priorities, said Mr Ivanov. The sides have made considerable progress in developing their relations in recent years, he noted.

Work to establish a common economic and common energy areas is in full swing, said the minister. Apart from that, Russia and the EU are taking first steps to provide for a common security space.

Russia and the EU have quite specific areas of cooperation, summed up the Russian foreign minister.

Russia and Denmark are going to have a lot of contacts, since the latter is assuming the rotating EU chairmanship on July 1, according to Mr Ivanov. The two countries have busy schedules of bilateral discussions and contacts in the next few months. In November, for one, Denmark will host a Russia-EU summit and a series of diplomatic meetings, which will help achieve progress in every area of cooperation, said the minister.

Per Stig Moller, Danish Foreign Minister, said, on his part, that they had agreed to launch active arrangements for the upcoming Russia-EU and Russia-Denmark summits, which would take place in November. Besides, the two ministers resolved to bolster economic and environmental contacts between Russia and the EU within the Northern Dimension programme.

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