© European Union, 2012
(from left) José Manuel Barroso, President of the European Commission; President of Russia, Vladimir Putin; Herman Van Rompuy, President of the European Council
President of the European Council Herman Van Rompuy hosted the 30th EU and Russia bilateral summit, which took place in Brussels on 20 and 21 December. The agenda addressed a wide range of bilateral issues, covering political and economic matters and strategic perspectives for the EU-Russia relationship.
"Today we held our 30th EU-Russia Summit. This is a real tribute to the important nature of our partnership. It demonstrates the priority which we attach to this strategic relationship." said President Van Rompuy.
Leaders discussed work done on the new EU-Russia agreement; the EU-Russia Partnership for Modernisation; trade issues following Russia's WTO accession in August 2012; energy cooperation; visa issues and mobility; aviation; crisis management and civil protection cooperation as well as human rights and the rule of law.
They also looked at Russia's G20 presidency as well as regional and international issues, with particular attention given to the situation in Syria, the Middle East and North Africa and the Iranian nuclear programme. Questions relating to the situation in Moldova/Transnistria, Georgia and Nagorno-Karabakh and the Western Balkans were also addressed during the plenary session.
The EU was represented by President Van Rompuy and President of the European Commission José Manuel Barroso. High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Catherine Ashton and European Commissioners Günther Oettinger (Energy) and Karel De Gucht (Trade) also took part.
Russia was represented by President Vladimir Putin, accompanied by Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, Minister for Energy Alexander Novak and Minister for the Economy Andrei Belousov.