MOSCOW, February 1. /TASS/. Russia has always been a reliable trade partner and gas supplier, while Italy has been a punctual customer, Italian Foreign Minister Angelino Alfano said following talks with his Russian counterpart, Sergey Lavrov.
"Even during the Cold War era, Italian citizens used Russian gas to heat their homes, and we intend to maintain this great tradition. Italy has always been a reliable partner and has punctually paid for all services provided, the same way Russia has been a reliable partner and supplier of those services. I assume that this will serve as collateral for what we are going to do in the future," he noted.
According to Alfano, Thursday’s talks particularly focused on the issues related to expanding trade and economic ties between the two countries, and stepping up mutual export supplies. He added that the Russian-Italian Council for Economic, Industrial and Currency-Financial Cooperation is "a certain kind of driver for those bilateral ties."
"We have the prerequisites to actively advance in this direction. Even during difficult times, relations between Italy and Russia were and still are special, nurturing productive cooperation," the top diplomat emphasized.