ATHENS, February 13, 5:03 /ITAR-TASS/. Russia is Greece’s best partner in improvement of its economy’s export focus, spokesperson of the Greek government Simos Kedikoglou said during a reception on Wednesday evening, which was organised by the Greek-Russian Chamber.
The event featured Greece’s Minister of Environment, Energy and Climate Change Yannis Maniatis, Minister of Development, Competitiveness, Infrastructure, Transport and Networks Kostis Hatzidakis, members of the parliament, local officials, businesses and Russian diplomats.
Kedikoglou stressed the presence of the ministers at the reception demonstrated the attention the Greek government had been paying to relations with Russia. “There are many businesses here, and it is very important, as you will be involved in the economic relations, and we are opening roads for you,” he said, expressing hope “2014 will be a key year in the Greek-Russian relations in the economic sphere,” as at other levels Greece and the Russian Federation “have been cooperating closely, and we enjoy good mutual understanding.”
“As Greece is chairing the European Union, Greece may favour best mutually advantageous solutions for issues between the EU and Russia,” the government’s representative said.
He continued saying for Greek businesses the best business locations were “not Moscow or St. Petersburg, where markets are full now, but the Russian regions.”
“It is best to begin from Russia’s south, as there we may find support from local people of Greek origin, and there it would be easier to do business for the Greeks. I believe even more attractive from the economic and entrepreneurial aspects are other regions, like Siberia. We should establish contacts with the Chamber of Trade and Commerce in Novosibirsk.”
The government’s representative expressed the view that the Greek-Russian relations had good future “as those are two mutually adding economies.”
“Greece lacks what Russia has, and vice versa,” he said adding that 1.4 million Russian tourists had visited Greece in 2013.
“Both countries will favour from mutual cooperation,” Kedikoglou said referring to Prime-Minister Antonis Samaras’ urging for development of cooperation with other countries. “This would mean attraction of investments and growth of the export,” Kedikoglou said. “I am sure there is no better counterpart than Russia to develop the export trend of this country’s economy.”
Kedikoglou also mentioned the upcoming Russia-Greece cross-year due in 2016. “Our objective will be to organise it on a very high level.