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Lukashenko, Putin to discuss trade, economic cooperation, SES

MINSK, 31 May (BelTA) - President of the Republic of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko and Russian President Vladimir Putin are set to discuss the topical issues of the bilateral cooperation and agree on the areas of development of Belarusian-Russian relations during an official visit of the Russian head of state to Minsk on 31 May-1 June, BelTA learnt from the press service of the Belarusian leader.

The Presidents will discuss the Belarus-Russia interaction both on a bilateral basis and within international organizations. One of the main themes of the talks will be cooperation in the Single Economic Space of the Troika.

Great attention will be paid to the development of trade and economic, investment cooperation of Belarus and Russia, interaction in nuclear energy. In 2011 the bilateral trade amounted to $38.6 billion, up nearly 38% from 2010. Belarus ranks sixth in Russia’s foreign trade.

A separate set of issues will be dedicated to military and technical cooperation and collective security, including within the framework of the CSTO.

The heads of state will exchange views on current international and regional issues, and will consider coordination of action in foreign policy.

It is expected that after the negotiations Alexander Lukashenko and Vladimir Putin will make a joint statement in which they will outline critical priorities for cooperation. Several other documents on cooperation in various areas are expected to be signed during the visit.

It is noteworthy that Belarus will become the first country that Vladimir Putin will visit in the capacity of the President of Russia. The visit will take place in the run-up to the 20th anniversary of the diplomatic relations between the two states.