Wrapping up meetings of the joint committee, Syria and Russia sign cooperation protocol, vow to build strategic partnership

MOSCOW, (ST)- Concluding its meetings on Wednesday in Moscow, the Permanent joint Syrian-Russian Committee for Trade, Economic, Technical and Scientific Cooperation signed a protocol for cooperation and an agreement on facilitating customs between the two countries.

The protocol was signed by Deputy Premier, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates Walid al-Moallem and the Russian Deputy prime Minister Yuri Borisov, while the agreement on custom cooperation was signed by al-Moallem and Deputy head of the Federal Customs Service of Russia Vladimir Evin.

Earlier in the day, the joint committee held two rounds of talks, one of them was mini meeting and the other was an extended meeting.

During the mini meeting, which was held between al-Moallem and Borisov, al-Moallem stressed that the goal of cooperation between Syria and Russia is to build a strategic partnership that match the level of the Syrian-Russian alliance relationship. He appreciated the results of economic cooperation, stressing the need to upgrade this cooperation to the level of political and military ties.

 He called for discussing methods of achieving a notable jump in economic cooperation and trade exchange and urged eliminating the obstacles facing boosting this cooperation.

He noted that the two sides are determined to build a stronger base for cooperation.

Al-Maollem affirmed that the Syrian people highly appreciate Russia's support for Syria in the confrontation of the terrorist war imposed on the country and welcome Russia's contribution to Syria's reconstruction process and its support for the Syrian national efforts to surpass the repercussions of the crisis and restore security and stability countrywide.

On his part, Borisov stressed the depth of the Syrian-Russian cooperation and expressed Moscow's readiness to continue constructive and beneficial interaction in all fields, including political dialogue, military and economic cooperation and humanitarian action.  

The senior Russian official said "we are determined to maintain dialogue and enhance trade, investment, scientific, technical and cultural cooperation," reiterating his country's  firm stance on providing all forms of support for the Syrian people.

In the extended meeting, al-Moallem emphasized that the Russian stance towards the terrorist war on Syria has deepened the historical friendship between the two countries.

He pointed out that Russia's support for Syria at all levels, particularly in the military domain and the fight against terrorism was an essential factor in victories achieved over global terrorism groups and their supporting parties, mainly the United States and the Turkish regime which are trying to compensate for the failure of their terrorist tools through direct military intervention, displacing the Syrians, and stealing Syrian national wealth and practicing ethnic cleansing.

He reiterated that the Syrian people and army are more determined to preserve Syria's sovereignty and unity, to completely eliminate takfiri terrorists and to end the illegal presence of foreign troops in the Syrian territories.

He underscored that Syria deals positively and constructively with all efforts that aim at helping Syria get out of the crisis on the basis of respecting Syria's national sovereignty and the non interference in the country's internal affairs.

From the Russian side,  Mikhail Babich, deputy head of the Syrian-Russian permanent committee, said that the two sides set up an effective mechanism to specify the list of the promising projects which are given priority in the Russian-Syrian cooperation.

"We concentrate on providing products, which have popular consumption despite the decrease in the volume of exporting these products by 8.9 percent  in 2019," Babich added, stressing that  in addition to the cooperation protocol and agreement signed today more documents will be signed in the near future.

He made it clear that there are great potentials to enhance cooperation in the domains of energy, industry, education, IT,  transport, building and humanitarian action.

Hamda Mustafa