Medvedev: Russian-Ukrainian relations must not come down to gas price

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Oct. 18, 2011, 4:11 p.m. | Business — by Interfax-Ukraine

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, left, and Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych attend a meeting in the city of Donetsk, Ukraine, Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2011.
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Donetsk, Oct. 18 (Interfax-Ukraine) - The Russian-Ukrainian relations should not be reduced to gas price discussions, there are also other values which need to be developed properly, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev said. "The Russian-Ukrainian relations must not come down to just conversations about the price of buying gas or how to build an important area of cooperation such as energy," Medvedev said at the 2nd Russian-Ukrainian Interregional Economic Forum in Donetsk.

There are also other values "that one should learn to handle and develop in the correct manner," he said.

Over the past year, since the first forum was held, the inter-regional relations between the two countries have strengthened significantly, the president said.

Nineteen Russian regions account for 90% of the bilateral trade, which by Aug. 1 stood at $33 billion and will exceed $50 billion by the end of 2011, Medvedev said.

Whereas Russia is Ukraine's main trade partner, Ukraine is Russia's fourth biggest trade partner, he added.

At the inter-regional level, agreements are adopted within very short periods of time, which is something to learn from when signing inter-state and inter-governmental agreements, the president said.

"Of course, we must not stop at our achievements, because the potential for growth, trade and bilateral cooperation is significant," the president said.

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