Joint Policy Statement by Prime Minister Stephen Harper and President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin on Canada-Russia Relations. G8 Documents (St. Petersburg, 2006)
Canada and the Russian Federation enjoy a rich and diverse bilateral relationship. Today we reaffirm our commitment to reinforce key areas of joint endeavour. Energy cooperation is addressed in a separate Statement.
We reaffirm our strong intent to work together on security and counter-terrorism through our established bilateral dialogue and close collaboration in multilateral fora. We shall continue to participate actively in efforts to strengthen international consensus and to contribute to the global campaign against terrorism. In particular, we shall maintain and strengthen our cooperation in relation to Afghanistan and our mutual efforts to combat narco-trafficking in the region.
We are committed to building further our cooperation under the Global Partnership Against the Spread of Weapons and Materials of Mass Destruction. The Partnership has become a key large-scale international initiative which has contributed to the enhancement of international security and safety. The Partnership already demonstrates tangible results, and cooperation between our two countries has led to significant progress in all priority areas. We are particularly pleased with the excellent bilateral collaboration and spirit of partnership that has developed through working together on this program.
Recent years have provided our business people with impressive new opportunities for enhanced trade and investment exchange, which is contributing to the prosperity of our citizens. In order to add further momentum to this positive trend, we intend to encourage increased business to business dialogue, including through the structures of our Intergovernmental Economic Commission.
We are neighbours in the vastness of the North, and we share a deep commitment to the welfare of our Arctic communities. As partners in the Arctic Council and through our bilateral dialogue and cooperation, we shall continue to work together toward sound and sustainable Northern development, balancing environmental protection with economic prosperity.
We recognize that democracy, open societies and efficient market economies are powerful and positive forces for growth and development in our countries and in the world. We intend also to continue our constructive dialogue in this area and to share experiences on governance models which can contribute to ongoing improvement in the lives of our citizens.
We shall also widen the practice of consultations and exchange of opinions on all the issues of mutual interest, to encourage development of ties and exchanges in the sphere of culture, science, education, tourism, sports, civil society and between individuals.
Saint-Petersburg, July 15, 2006