Relations between Switzerland and Russia have considerably intensified in recent years in the political, economic, scientific and cultural fields, as witnessed by the frequent high-level contacts that have taken place in this period. During her first term as President of the Confederation, Mrs Calmy-Rey met Mr Putin, who was then President of the Russian Federation, during her visit to Moscow on 8-9 November 2007. The memorandum of understanding signed on that occasion paved the way for dozens of bilateral consultations in a very wide range of fields.
The two states have worked continually to build up a network of treaties. Most recently, the agreement on facilitated visa issuance and on readmission entered into force on 1 February 2011. Currently, work is in progress in particular in expanding cooperation in the financial sector and in economic modernisation. On 5 April 2011, the two countries initialled an amendment to the agreement on the avoidance of double taxation in accordance with the OECD standard on the exchange of information. In 2010, the volume of trade between the two countries reached CHF 3.7 billion.
A special dimension of Swiss-Russian relations is Switzerland’s role in representing Russian interests in Georgia and those of Georgia in Russia, in particular Switzerland’s mediation in the question of Russia’s possible accession to the WTO.
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