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President Putin praised “the good base for further deepening the mutually beneficial relationship” between Moscow and Brussels during a plenary session of a Russia-EU summit in the Russian Urals city of Yekaterinburg on Tuesday.
The EU remains the largest investor in Russia, while 60 per cent of Russian investment abroad took place in Europe.
Economic ties have been growing steadily amid tottering global recovery and challenges in 2012, Putin said, citing promising trade and investment figures.
Bilateral trade grew 4.1 per cent to a record $410 billion, which accounted for half of Russia’s foreign trade, he said.
The accumulated investment of EU members in the Russian economy amounted to $276.8, Putin said.
“All this is the clear evidence of close interdependence, so we have to listen to each other, consult each other and work with each other,” Putin said.
However, the president has admitted to glaring differences between Russia and the EU, especially in the energy sector.
Meanwhile, he called for close contacts between the EU and the Eurasian Economic Commission.
Putin, European Council President Herman Van Rompuy and European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso are taking part in a working session of the 31st EU-Russia Summit.
The talks are expected to cover the global economy, energy, visa issues, and the situation in Syria.