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Official website of the President of Russia

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First Russian-Ukrainian Interregional Economic Forum

October 4, 2010, Gelendzhik

Developing trade in the border regions, improving the operation of crossing points on the Russian-Ukrainian border, intensifying contacts and developing infrastructure in border regions, and environmental protection were the main subjects on the agenda.

Dmitry Medvedev noted a number of interregional cooperation aspects that require particular attention. They include encouraging reciprocal investment, promoting an innovative and high-technology economy, expanding ties in the manufacturing sector, joint humanitarian and environmental efforts, building technology parks and other cooperation centres, and developing infrastructure.

The President said that interregional cooperation should develop taking into account the existing integration organisations in which Russia and Ukraine participate, in particular the  Customs Union. The Business Council of the Chambers of Commerce and Industry also offers potential that should be put to greater use, the President stressed.

Mr Medvedev pointed out the need not only to preserve but also strengthen the common information space with a common data base on supply and demand on both countries’ markets.

Before the forum began, President Medvedev and Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych discussed cooperation in energy and joint aerospace projects, as well as the possibility of building a bridge across the Kerch Strait to link Russia’s Krasnodar Territory with Crimea in Ukraine. This was one of the projects presented at an exhibition of infrastructure projects for developing border regions, which the two leaders visited. Dmitry Medvedev said that building this bridge was an important project as it would make it easier for Russian and Ukrainian citizens to cross between each other’s countries and increase trade flows between the two.

A number of documents aimed at developing business and public initiatives and expanding ties between border regions were signed at the forum’s conclusion, including, in particular, the Programme for Russian-Ukrainian Interregional and Border Region Cooperation for 2011–2016.

October 4, 2010, Gelendzhik