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MOSCOW, November 2 (Itar-Tass) — Moscow will host the next fourteenth round of Russian-German high-level consultations on November 16, the Kremlin press service said on Friday.
On the sidelines of the interstate consultations Russian President Vladimir Putin and German Chancellor Angela Merkel will take part in a meeting of the forum of the two countries’ civil societies – the Petersburg Dialogue.
The Petersburg Dialogue was launched in 2001 at the initiative of Russian President Vladimir Putin and German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder to create long-term and sincere exchange of opinions among politicians, researchers, cultural figures, business people and representatives of the civil society.
The forum is organized under the patronage of the two countries’ leaders.
There are eight working groups within the framework of the forum.
The working group on politics includes representatives of the government and non-governmental organizations and experts in Russian-German relations. The discussions mainly focus on political interaction between the two countries and on the global scene.
The group on economics, first of all, consists of business people who are interested in fostering bilateral economic cooperation. They discuss the issues related to the role of Russia and Germany in the global economic system. However, the main focus is placed on bilateral relations and deeper cooperation in all sectors.
The group on civil society brings together representatives of the two countries’ non-governmental organizations who consider pressing and conflict themes, which, if debated openly, can help bring the nations together.
The group on science and education, first of all, gathers scientists, researchers, education experts and students.
The group on culture is responsible for promoting cultural cooperation.
The working group on media brings together representatives of the two countries’ leading media outlets which in many respects create the image of a partner country. They discuss most pressing issues and their coverage in the media as well as the media’s role in the modern world. Moreover, the group acts as an initiator of multiple bilateral projects targeted at improving mutual understanding between the two countries’ public at large and creating the image of a partner country, which corresponds to reality.
The group entitled Workshop of the Future was set up in 2004 and unlike other groups that have restricted areas of activity is engaged in resolving different issues related to the prospects for the development of the two countries and the global society in general. Therefore its members represent practically all spheres of the civil society.
The Churches in Europe is ‘the youngest” group in the structure of the Petersburg Dialogue. Its first meeting took place in Germany’s Wiesbaden in 2007. It includes representatives of Christian confessions of Russia and Germany.