10 December 2019
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Ambassador Andrei Kelin’s speech at the opening of the V Russian-British Business Forum in London, 27 November 2019

Ladies and gentlemen! 

I am pleased with the opportunity to deliver my first speech as Russian Ambassador to the United Kingdom at the Russian-British Business Forum.

Over the five years, the Forum has become a solid platform for open and direct dialogue and exchange of views, involving both business community and officials. The number of participants has been growing annually. Together, we have managed to create a constructive atmosphere of partnership.

We are grateful to our Russian and British partners for their active support of such an effective and promising dialogue platform. Let me express my special thanks to His Royal Highness Prince Michael of Kent for his unfailing assistance in strengthening Russian-British relations. I would like to emphasize the systematic work of Russo-British Chamber of Commerce in this area as well as that of many British and Russian companies.

Our meeting is taking place in time of major changes in the global economy and politics. Not only economic crises, trade wars, natural disasters and climate-related threats characterize this turbulent era. The world is facing a shift of techno-economic paradigm. The unprecedented development of science and technology opens up previously unknown opportunities for universal prosperity and solving the global problems. The knowledge we have allows us to achieve it. The key is to avoid barriers to the mutually beneficial exchange of information, goods and services. Our Forum, dedicated to the crucial topic of digitalization, also seeks to contribute to this process.

For its part, Russia is making a significant contribution to the world’s sustainable development. Political and social stability along with high macroeconomic performance create a solid base for further growth. It includes a high GDP, resilient financial system, low public debt, stable prices, significant gold and foreign currency reserves, nearly full employment.

Russia navigates well the sea of new opportunities which open up through advanced technologies and broadening of international ties. In the age of the 4th global industrial revolution, we have formulated our own effective model of sustainable development. We adopted the Paris Agreement this September and intend to hold a high bar of our climate-related obligations.

Russia has everything necessary to get adjusted to the new conditions. Our country has moved several dozen positions up in the World Bank’s «Doing Business» index only in five years and now stands among the top 30 economies. We pursue major structural changes in our economy in order to ensure its diversification and transition to an advanced growth pattern. It is based on knowledge, innovation, improvement of human capital and liberal economic order. In the years to come, the Russian government plans to spend tens of billions of dollars on economic reforms. The share of small and medium enterprises in the economy will be doubled by 2025 up to 40 % of GDP.

Russia implements a number of plans and programmes aimed at transition to the digital economy, introducing brand new approaches to regulation, establishing necessary institutions and contributing to investments increase. We have reached the 10th place in the world in terms of broadband internet access. The first 5G network was launched earlier this year. The National Artificial Intellect Strategy has been adopted. Active work is under way with regard to a draft law on digital financial assets, which will be among the first of its kind in the world. The digitalization is expected to add a percent point to GDP growth in the mid-term.

The high economic potential of Russia and our serious plans to fully unroll it is recognized internationally. Foreign business shows great interest in our country. International forums in Moscow, St. Petersburg, Vladivostok and Sochi always attract government officials and heads of biggest transnational enterprises from around the world. Deals worth billions dollars are forged during these events.

The latest successful example is the Investment Forum “Russia Calling!” which took place last week in Moscow. A frank exchange of views between the Russian leadership and leading business figures from Russia and abroad confirmed our openness to interact with all interested partners on mutually beneficial and non-politicized terms.

As repeatedly emphasized, the Russian government constantly works to improve the business climate in our country. We provide foreign business with all necessary assistance and this also applies to British companies.

British business understands this well. They show wisdom and pragmatism while increasing cooperation with their Russian partners in various sectors.

We are confident that a positive economic agenda will become a powerful incentive aimed at improving and strengthening our bilateral relations in all spheres, for the benefit of both "the global Russia" and "the global Britain".

I wish success to all participants of the Forum in their activities, as well as new interesting and productive meetings and expansion of their business and personal contacts.

Thank you for your attention.


06.12.2019 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s remarks at the 26th OSCE Ministerial Council meeting, Bratislava, December 5, 2019

Mr Chairperson-in-Office, Mr Secretary General, Ladies and Gentlemen, First of all, allow me to thank Slovakia’s Chairmanship for its hospitality. Here in Bratislava, where Western and Eastern Europe meet, we are reminded that the purpose of our organisation is to facilitate the emergence of shared security through cooperation, as well as the removal of dividing lines and the growth of mutual trust. The goal adopted at the 2010 Astana summit of building a community of equal, comprehensive and indivisible security should remain our utmost priority. Today, CSTO foreign ministers adopted a statement to this effect, reaffirming their commitment to this objective.

28.11.2019 - Deputy Foreign Minister Oleg Syromolotov’s reply to a media question concerning the recent statement of the UK’s Chief of the Defence Staff

Q: How would you comment on the statement made by the UK’s Chief of the Defence Staff Sir Nicholas Carter that the UK is in a state of cyber war with Russia? Has London raised this matter with Moscow? Has the British side provided any evidence? A.: This is not the first statement of this sort made by the UK’s Chief of the Defence Staff, General Carter, and it certainly needs to be considered in the context of the large-scale anti-Russian propaganda campaign launched by the British government.

21.11.2019 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s remarks and answers to media questions at a joint news conference with Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Bahrain Khalid bin Ahmed Al Khalifa, Moscow, November 20, 2019

We have had very good talks with my Bahraini colleague and friend, Khalid bin Ahmed Al Khalifa, and we have reached agreements on all the issues we discussed.

13.11.2019 - Article by Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov for the media of the BRICS countries "BRICS Strategic Partnership for Global Stability, Shared Security and Innovative Growth", November 12, 2019

On November 13–14, 2019, Brasilia will host the 11th BRICS Summit. In the run-up to this key event of the year for our group I would like to share Russia's vision of the BRICS strategic partnership. The current Brazilian BRICS Chairmanship managed to achieve serious progress in all main pillars of cooperation – political, economic and humanitarian. Russia supports its Brazilian friends in their efforts to improve the practical impact of our multifaceted interaction on the prosperity of our States and peoples.

13.11.2019 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s remarks and answers to questions at the Masterclass working session held as part of the 2019 Paris Peace Forum, Paris, November 12, 2019

Thank you for coming to this panel. For the sake of time, my introductory remarks will be brief.

12.11.2019 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s remarks and answers to media questions during a joint news conference with Minister of Foreign Affairs of Armenia Zohrab Mnatsakanyan, Yerevan, November 11, 2019

Mr Mnatsakanyan, First of all, I would like thank our Armenian friends for the invitation on behalf of my delegation and myself, for the very cordial welcome and substantive negotiations that began today with a meeting with Prime Minister of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan and continued at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

06.11.2019 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s remarks and answers to media questions at a joint news conference following talks with Foreign Minister of the Republic of Burundi Ezechiel Nibigira, Moscow, November 5, 2019

Good afternoon, The meeting with my Burundian colleague Ezechiel Nibigira took place in a warm and friendly atmosphere. We enjoy friendly relations based on the principles of international law, respect for mutual interests and deep historical sympathy that our peoples have for each other.

01.11.2019 - Permanent Representative of Russia to the OSCE Alexander Lukashevich’s interview with Rossiyskaya Gazeta, October 29, 2019

Question: Mr Lukashevich, I would like to start with a difficult question. The people seldom understand the role and importance of such institutions as the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE). They believe that it is all talk and little action, apart from that of the adoption of resolutions. This is partly true. Are there too many international organisations that are hardly having any influence on realities? And it also costs a fortune to maintain them.

01.11.2019 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s remarks and answers to media questions at a joint news conference following talks with OSCE Secretary General Thomas Greminger, Moscow, October 31, 2019

Ladies and gentlemen, We have held constructive, substantive and very detailed talks with OSCE Secretary General Thomas Greminger. This is his second visit to Moscow this year. We welcome the regular nature of our contacts.

01.11.2019 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s opening remarks at talks with OSCE Secretary General Thomas Greminger, Moscow, October 31, 2019

Mr Secretary General, my dear Thomas, Colleagues, We are delighted that you have come to Russia again. We reaffirm our support for your efforts to enhance the efficiency of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE). We see that your team is really focused on formulating a unifying agenda of the organisation and on restoring trust between the member states which has been seriously undermined.

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