MOSCOW, August 5. /TASS/. Russia attaches great importance to friendly relations with the Plurinational State of Bolivia and has plans to increase trade, Alexander Schetinin, the Director of the Russian Foreign Ministry’s Latin American Department, said on Friday.
"We are glad that the Plurinational State of Bolivia is our reliable and long-standing partner, relations with which are based on mutual trust and respect," the diplomat said speaking at a reception to mark the 191st anniversary of Bolivia’s independence. He noted that cooperation with this country, which has the largest number of official languages (37), "is going from strength to strength." "This is due in particular to the political will of the two countries’ presidents - Vladimir Putin and Evo Morales," Schetinin said. "Their personal meetings have given a powerful impetus to cooperation between Russia and Bolivia in various areas."
"We maintain productive political dialogue, which is of particular importance, especially in view of the fact that Bolivia will be a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council in 2017-2018," the diplomat said, adding that the two countries are actively cooperating in other international organizations as well, in particular, in the Gas Exporting Countries Forum (GECF). He recalled that the forum’s summit will be held in Bolivia next year.
"The two countries have forged mutually advantageous cooperation in the oil and gas sector, there are plans to increase bilateral trade and cooperation in personnel training," Schetinin said. He noted that Bolivia’s Ambassador to Russia, Diaz Mamani, is a graduate of a Russian university. "We still have a lot to do," the diplomat added.