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Putin, Aliyev to discuss bilateral, regional problems, including Karabakh, Caspian

June 13, 2015, 7:26 UTC+3 BAKU
The Kremlin regards Azerbaijan as "Russia’s important strategic partner in the Trans-Caucasus and the Caspian"
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BAKU, June 13. /TASS/. The outlook for a settlement in Nagorno-Karabakh, the Caspian and bilateral cooperation will be on the agenda of negotiations Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Azerbaijani counterpart Ilkham Aliyev will hold on Saturday.

"The forthcoming summit talks will touch upon the key aspects of the regional agenda, including Nagorno-Karabakh and the implementation of resolutions made by last September’s 4th Caspian Summit in Astrakhan," Russian presidential aide Yuri Ushakov said, adding that crucial bilateral and international issues would be raised, too.

Putin and Aliyev maintain regular contacts. Last time they met in Moscow on May 9 at ceremonies on the occasion of the 70th anniversary of victory over Nazi Germany. Over the past year Aliyev has visited Russia thrice. Last February he was present at the opening of the Winter Olympics in Sochi.

Putin arrived in Baku on Friday for the opening of the First European Games, which he described a major event in world sports.

The Kremlin regards Azerbaijan as "Russia’s important strategic partner in the Trans-Caucasus and the Caspian."

"Relations with Baku are neighborly, mutually beneficial and diversified," Ushakov said.

Russia and Azerbaijan have been actively cooperating in the trading and economic sphere. In 2014 bilateral trade reached a record-high of $4 billion; in the first quarter of this year it kept growing (5.8%). Investment ties have been getting stronger. In Azerbaijan there operate about 200 entirely Russian companies and another 300 joint ventures. The two countries are finalizing a program for economic cooperation till 2020.

Energy is one of the most promising tracks of bilateral cooperation. The Russian oil major LUKOIL is involved in developing the Shah Deniz gas field in Azerbaijan. Russia’s Transneft and the Azerbaijan’s state oil company SOCAR transit Azerbaijani crude through Russia.

"A high-level working group being established under the inter-governmental commission will be developing partnership in the energy sphere," Ushakov said.

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