Russian President Dmirtry Medvedev (2nd
R), Czech President Vaclav Klaus (2nd L), whose country currently holds
the rotating EU presidency, EU foreign policy chief Javier Solana (1st L)
and European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso (1st R) attend a
press conference at the end of the Russia-EU Summit in Khabarovsk, Russia,
May 22, 2009. The two-day 2009 Russia-EU summit held in the Russian
far-eastern city of Khabarovsk has achieved satisfactory outcomes, both
sides said so at a press conference Friday. (Xinhua/Lu Jinbo)
KHABAROVSK, Russia, May 22 (Xinhua) -- The two-day
2009 Russia-EU summit held in the Russian far-eastern city of Khabarovsk has
achieved satisfactory outcomes, both sides said at a press conference
The participating leaders, including Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, Czech President Vaclav Klaus, whose country currently holds the rotating EU presidency, EU foreign policy chief Javier Solana and European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso, said they were satisfied with the outcomes of the meeting.
A broad range of issues were discussed at the talks, such as the ongoing global financial crisis, Russia's proposals on the European energy charter, security issues and major international problems including the situations in Caucasus, the Middle East, Moldova, Afghanistan and Pakistan.
The two sides discussed ways of tackling the financial crisis and acknowledged the accomplishments achieved at the G20 London Summit. They agreed to fully implement the consensus reached at the summit.
On Russia's recent proposals for a new global energy charter in replacement of the existing European energy charter, both sides agreed to hold further consultations to revise the current one while taking into account some of Russia's ideas.
On the formation of a new architecture for European security, both sides agreed to have more talks in the near future.
"All in all, today no doubt a strategic character of partnership has formed between Russia and the European Union," Medvedev said.
Czech President Klaus also said the EU Russia as a strategic partner for the bloc.
While both sides hailed the results of the talks, differences remain over some key issues in their relationship.
The summit was held at a time when both sides are trying to mend ties. The past 12 months have witnessed a five-day war between Russia and Georgia over the latter's breakaway regions, as well as a gas pricing row that disrupted supplies to Europe in cold winter and has raised doubts over Russia's credibility as a major gas supplier.
In response to questions concerning the gas crisis in early January, both sides said such an incident should not happen again.
However, while Medvedev emphasized the importance of altering the current European energy charter, which his country has not and will not abide by, in order to avoid the recurrence of the gas crisis, Barroso urged the establishment of an early warning mechanism.
"We have proposed an early warning mechanism on energy, covering oil, gas and electricity, consisting of three steps of notification, consultation and implementation. We will now work on ways to finalize this agreement," Barroso said.
Medvedev said it is necessary to formulate "a comprehensive legal framework" for energy cooperation.
"We are all unanimous on the need for such a framework. We will continue working on a legal framework for cooperation in the energy sphere. I am convinced that we will cope with this task," he said.
Both Russia and the EU agreed that energy inter-dependence between Europe and Russia is not negative but rather positive and advantageous for bilateral ties and mutual interests.
On the Eastern Partnership program which draws six former Soviet republics closer to the EU, EU foreign policy chief Solana said he very much welcomes Russia's participation in the program. Barroso also stressed that the program's utmost goal is to bring political stability and economic prosperity to the six countries.
However, Medvedev said he has not yet been fully convinced by the EU leaders that it is not directed against Russia.
Russia "does not want such program to consolidate separate states with other states of Europe in an anti-Russian attitude," said Medvedev.
On the first Middle East conference to be hosted by Russia this year, Solana said the EU will do its best to support and help Russia with the conference.