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MOSCOW, June 24 (Itar-Tass) ——President Vladimir Putin will discuss a number of important projects – the construction of a nuclear power plant and a grain terminal and modernization of an oil terminal at the Aqaba seaport. Amman will be the last leg of Putin’s Middle East tour due on June 25-26.
“Putin will meet King Abdullah II and attend the opening of a hotel for Russian pilgrims on the bank of the River Jordan where Christ was baptized. The land under the hotel is Russia’s property,” Presidential Aide for International Affairs Yuri Ushakov told a Sunday press briefing.
Putin and Abdullah II will discuss “the entire range of bilateral relations and the most pressing affairs, such as Syria and Iran,” he said.
“The leaders will have a frank discussion of the regional situation. They will concentrate on the events in Syria, the Middle East peace process in the context of the active mediating efforts of the King of Jordan, and the situation around Iran,” Ushakov said.
“A special item of the negotiations would be the participation of Russia in large infrastructural projects in Jordan, first and foremost, the construction of a nuclear power plant and a grain terminal and modernization of an oil terminal at the Aqaba seaport,” he said.
“The two leaders will highlight trade and economic cooperation. Bilateral trade is not large so far: it stood at $147.9 million in 2010 and $350 million in 2011. Trade grew with the deliveries of two Ilyushin Il-76MF jets (worth of $96 million), resumption of grain exports after the embargo lift ($68.4 million) and bigger deliveries of petroleum products ($111.4 million) and rolled steel products ($38.1 million).
“There is a steady positive trend: trade more than tripled in January-April 2012 [from $47.3 million to $153.8 million] as against the relevant period of last year,” Ushakov said.
The Russian-Jordanian Business Council will meet in Amman ahead of the Russian president’s visit. “This meeting confirms the interest of businessmen of both countries in the increase of mutually beneficial partnership,” the aide said.