EU-Russia Summit:extracts from the press conference by Herman VAN ROMPUY, President of the European Council, José Manuel BARROSO and Dmitry MEDVEDEV, President of Russia

Type: News   Reference: 82100   Duration: 00:04:16  Lieu: Brussels, Belgium - Council
End production: 15/12/2011   First transmission: 15/12/2011
On 15 December, José Manuel Barroso, President of the EC, Dmitry Medvedev, President of Russia, and Herman Van Rompuy, President of the European Council, held a press conference following their summit. The leaders welcomed the accession of Russia to the World Trade Organization which will open new opportunities for trade and for the development after 18 years of negotiations. They also underlined the further progress made in view of establishing a visa-free regime between Russia and the European Union. On energy, José Manuel Barroso said he welcomes 'the progress in the Energy Dialogue and the close EU-Russia energy partnership'. Regarding economic issues, President Dmitry Medvedev stated that Russia will invest 'the necessary financial means' to help stabilize the European Union and the eurozone countries. He added that Russia has an economic stake in the EU because 41 percent of Russia's foreign exchange reserves are denominated in euros. Herman Van Rompuy, President of the European Council, expressed concern over reports of irregularities and lack of fairness during this month's Russian parliamentary elections. He added 'he hopes that Russia will cooperate well with the OSCE to ensure a smooth monitoring of the Presidential election'.

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TIME DESCRIPTION DURATION
00:00:00 Title 00:00:05
00:00:05 Speakers arriving (2 shots) 00:00:14
00:00:19 SOUNDBITE (in English) José Manuel Barroso, President of the EC: During this Summit we also had the opportunity to celebrate the accession of Russia to the World Trade Organization which is officially scheduled to take place tomorrow. After 18 years of negotiations, this is a major achievement. Indeed, it opens new opportunities for trade and for the development of our bilateral economic relations which are already strong. In fact, despite of the economic situation, the trade of goods between the EU and Russia this year had very impressive results. Russia is EU's third largest trading partner and the EU is the first trading partner for Russia. 00:00:37
00:00:56 Cutaway of photographers 00:00:07
00:01:03 SOUNDBITE (in English) José Manuel Barroso: That is why I am also pleased to confirm that today we have launched the “Common Steps towards visa-free travel.” This decision has clear potential benefits to our citizens and for people-to-people contacts. In order to achieve real progress, the task ahead of us is to fully implement the agreed common steps which can lead to the opening of visa-waiver negotiations. I am confident that this process will continue in a positive direction. Our common goal is to have a visa-free regime between Russia and the European Union. 00:00:30
00:01:33 Cutaway of the audience 00:00:06
00:01:39 SOUNDBITE (in Russian) Dmitry Medvedev, President of Russia, saying that : The preservation of one of the most important currencies, the Euro, the EU and Member States and Russia, all are interested in this. And 40% of our foreign exchange reserve in Russia are denominated in Euros. This is why we will keep backing the EU, we have a quota in terms of International Monetary Fund membership. And we are bound by all the commitments being participant of IMF and ready to invest in financial means to back the European economy and the Eurozone. 00:00:55
00:02:34 Cutaway of the audience 00:00:05
00:02:39 SOUNDBITE (in English) Herman Van Rompuy, President of the European Council: We are concerned by irregularities and lack of fairness as reported by observers, as part as the Russian public. And we are concerned by the detention of protesters. In contrast the recent large demonstrations were peaceful and the authorities in my view handle it very well. We therefore welcome you pledge and commitment Mister President to investigate in fair and partial manner reports about electoral problems. We hope that Russia will cooperate well with the OSCE to ensure a smooth monitoring of the Presidential election. 00:00:37
00:03:16 Cutaway of the audience 00:00:06
00:03:22 SOUNDBITE (in English) Dmitry Medvedev, President of Russia, saying that: On the election I have nothing to comment, these are our elections. The European Parliament can comment. I will not comment their decisions they mean nothing for me, but our Russian Parliament representing the parties, the opposition does. Yesterday I look on the internet they expressed their indignation with the position of the EU Parliament which should deal with European issues because they have a lot of problems. 00:00:37
00:03:59 Speakers leaving the room 00:00:17
00:04:16 End 00:00:00
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