Joint projects will be considered at the opening Russia-EU summit.
Searching worldwide, one can hardly find two peoples who would be united by such a long, complex and contradictory history, as it happened in the relations between Germans and Russians.
There were ups and downs, fruitful cooperation, but also horrific catastrophes. The crowning point and major accomplishment in this process of mutual influence and the intertwining of fates was their historic reconciliation, whose importance for the future of our countries and throughout Europe cannot be overemphasized.
Our peoples have managed to draw lessons from the dark chapters of their shared past and to lay a strong and broad foundation for our present-day relationship: our network of economic ties has reached an unprecedented density. The cultural exchanges we have, the intensive political dialogue, and last but not least the numerous contacts at the level of civil society show a truly close and trusting relationship. The fundamental importance of these components for our countries and across Europe is reflected in the transformation of our relations into a strategic partnership. That partnership also means an opportunity to discuss our differences openly with each other.
Russia and Germany closely collaborate in the realm of global security. Our joint objectives include ensuring a comprehensive, indivisible and cooperative security, stability and prosperity.
We intend to build on the European continent, a space of stability and security without dividing lines and demarcations. A significant contribution to launching the dialogue on this topic has been made by the Russian initiative for a European Security Treaty. Our common position is that the security of one state cannot be achieved at another’s expense. On the contrary, it is determined by the highest possible degree of security for your neighbor. Therefore, we intend to jointly conduct a broad dialogue on European security, to delve deeper into the different points of view on this matter and to overcome contradictions. This is especially true of confidence-building measures, disarmament and arms control initiatives and conflict resolution.
Globalization confronts Russia and Germany with diverse economic, social and political challenges, but also gives us new opportunities. Today's knowledge society calls as never before for openness, independence and liberty for the development of the individual and the society. Collaboration and a network of closer ties between our peoples can make a decisive contribution to this cause. Knowing this, we have agreed on a German-Russian partnership for modernization. We want to maximally tap the huge potential inherent in the close German-Russian cooperation.
This partnership is already bearing its first fruit: In the field of energy relations that are of great importance to the economies of the two countries, we have established the Russian-German Energy Agency (RuDEA), with a range of tasks in the area of energy efficiency enhancement and innovative energy supply. German and Russian scientists and specialists intensively cooperate in the fields of health care, demographic development, law and logistics. The initiative to open a German House of Science and Innovation (DWIH) in Moscow is designed to facilitate closer contacts in these areas and to support scientific exchanges. German companies have for many years been active in Russia, and Russian firms are increasingly investing in Germany.
At the governmental level, we intend to expand the scope of our partnership for modernization. Fruitful topics for German-Russian dialogue may be economic and administrative law, as well as the anti-corruption drive. The prospect for less cumbersome passenger traffic between Russia and Germany within a European framework is also an important element of mutual exchanges and close ties between our countries.
The modernization partnership being built by the European Union and Russia follows the German-Russian model. Our experience, amassed at the bilateral level, will benefit the Russian-European project. At the Russia-EU summit to be held May 31-June 1 in Rostov-on-Don, Russia and the EU have in mind the goal of agreeing on the first concrete projects.
The partnership for modernization is not an end in itself. It serves a Europe based on broad cooperation without dividing lines, a community of democratic states relying upon rule of law principles and having diversified market economies and a high standard of living. Russia and Germany can make a decisive contribution to attaining this goal. We have firmly decided to continue and expand our cooperation in this regard.
Published in the Newspaper “Rossiiskaya Gazeta”
May 31, 2010