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10 Feb, 2008 12:37

"Where is Russia heading?"

Russia's First Deputy Prime Minister, Sergey Ivanov, has addressed delegates at the world's annual security conference in Germany. The speech entitled ‘Where is Russia Heading?’ outlined Russia's future role in global security. Ivanov also spoke on the co

“The process of Russia’s revival objectively combines our ambition to occupy an appropriate place in international politics and our commitment to maintain our national interests,” said Ivanov.

He went on to say, “Russia doesn’t aim to buy the world with its petrodollars. But while welcoming foreign investment in Russia’s economy, we expect it to be two-way traffic. Yet for the moment the ratio accumulated in mutual investment is one to ten in favour of the European Union.”

“By 2020 Russia should be among the world’s five biggest economies with GDP per capita of over $US 30,000,” he predicted.

“It would really become possible to shift the control of nuclear weapons and the process of their gradual reduction to a multilateral basis. This is precisely an area of international relations where Russia and the U.S. are obliged to show their leadership. None of us has any doubts about the importance of multilateral barriers to WMD proliferation,” Ivanov added.

To watch the full version of Ivanov’s address, please follow the link

Meanwhile, the Secretary-General of the EU Council, Javier Solana, says Russia is becoming a key security partner for Europe. He also praised Russia's efforts in solving Iran's nuclear issue.

Solana suggested that the next round of international talks on Iran's programme should be held in the Russian capital.

Solana stated there are misunderstandings in Moscow's relations with its western partners, but he's optimistic that both sides will overcome their differences.

Known as the ‘Davos’ of security forums, the annual Munich conference brings together the cream of the world’s political crop. It’s an informal meeting where defence experts and politicians often make frank exchanges.