MOSCOW, May 22. /TASS/. German Minister for Economic Affairs and Energy Peter Altmaier believes cooperation must be discussed with Russia in sectors that are not covered by Western sanctions, the Passauer Neue Presse newspaper said on Tuesday.
According to the paper, Altmaier believes it is still premature to lift the EU sanctions imposed on Russia over Ukraine. However, it quoted the minister as saying he wants "to discuss with the new Russian government where economic cooperation outside the zones of sanctions can be developed, which will lead to new economic development".
During his trip to Moscow on May 15, the German minister met with Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev to discuss the implementation of major Russian-German projects.
Following the incorporation of Crimea after a coup in Ukraine, Moscow came under sanctions from the United States and many European countries. The restrictive measures were soon ramped up following Western and Ukrainian claims that Russia was supporting the militias in self-proclaimed republics of Ukraine’s southeast and was involved in the destabilization of Ukraine.
Talks on visa-free trips and on a new cooperation agreement were suspended. Travel bans were imposed on Russian officials and their assets were frozen, restrictions were also imposed in trade, financial and military sectors. All in all, 151 people and 37 legal entities found themselves on the sanctions list. Sectoral sanctions are in place against 20 Russian financial, oil producing and defense entities.