EU-Russia Summit in St Petersburg: extracts from the joint press conference by José Manuel BARROSO, President of the EC, Herman VAN ROMPUY, President of the European Council and Vladimir PUTIN, Russian President
Première transmission: 04/06/2012
Konstantinovsky Palace, St Petersburg
Fin de production: 04/06/2012
The legal basis for EU relations with Russia is the Partnership and Cooperation Agreement (PCA) which came into force on 1 December 1997 for an initial duration of 10 years, and which has been automatically extended beyond 2007 on an annual basis. It sets the principal common objectives, establishes the institutional framework for bilateral contacts, and calls for activities and dialogue in a number of areas.
The EU is currently working with Russia on a new agreement to replace the PCA. Both the EU and Russia have experienced many political, economic and social changes since the entry into force of the PCA in 1997. The new agreement must reflect these changes as well as the new challenges linked to globalisation. The Partnership for Modernisation was launched at the June 2010 summit when priority areas for cooperation were identified. They are set out in work plans, which are now being implemented.
These priorities include investment, trade, promoting SMEs, alignment of technical regulations and standards, research and development, promoting the effective functioning of the judiciary and strengthening the fight against corruption as well as the dialogue with civil society.
Since 2005 the EU and Russia have held regular, six-monthly human rights consultations. The last meeting took place in November 2011. They have provided for a substantial dialogue on human rights issues in Russia and the EU and on EU-Russian cooperation on human rights issues in international fora.
The EU has raised with Russia issues including the human rights situation in Chechnya and the North Caucasus; freedom of expression and assembly, including freedom of the media; the situation of civil society in Russia, notably in light of the laws on NGOs and extremist activities; the functioning of the judiciary and its independence; the observation of human rights standards by law enforcement officials; racism and xenophobia; legislation relating to elections.
Only the original language version is authentic and it prevails in the event of its differing from the translated versions.
||Arrival of the speakers
||Wide shot of the speakers
||SOUNDBITE (in Russian) by Vladimir Putin, Russian President saying that: I would like to stress our gratitude to European Union and European Commission for the gradual support of Russia in the process of joint WTO, obviously we discussed the problems to achieve a visa free regime for travelling between Russia and the EU. The existing visa various, is an optical for development for humanitarian context and economy. We also analysed how joint initiative of partnerships for modernisation has been implemented.
||Cutaway of Günther Oettinger, Member of the EC in charge of Energy assisting to the press conference
||SOUNDBITE (in English) by Herman VAN ROMPUY, President of the European Council saying that the idea of Eurasian economic Union is based on the WTO rules could lead to positive contributions, to trade, prosperity and cooperation. The EU wants to be Russia's partner in his modernisation, and that is why I see the further development of the partnership for modernisation as one of the priorities in our relations.
||SOUNDBITE (in English) by José Manuel Barroso, EC President, on energy agreement saying that: This is a great legislation for all the Member States and it will be implemented in an objective and no discriminatory manner. I believe all aspects of fully compatible with international law. It is important to understand that internal market is in constant evolution. Decisions to liberalise several sectors, not only energy but also telecommunications, postal services are taken to increase competition and transparency and no to create any difficulty for any operator. Regarding Russian operators they are more than welcome in the European energy internal market. They are indeed welcome and they are in fact already benefiting for instance downstream of some openings that this third energy package is giving to them.
||Departure of the speakers