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President Putin says Russia plays a major role in global trade

President Putin says Russia plays a major role in global trade

Putin gave a wide-ranging speech at the International Economic Forum in St. Petersburg. He emphasized, referring to purchasing power data, that Russia is among the world's leading economies, even ahead of Germany.

The president did not provide any numbers that could support his version of reality.

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He referred to the sanctions imposed by Western countries as illegal.

The president said that about three-quarters of Russia's foreign trade is with friendly countries. In front of a gathering of several hundred guests from the same countries, Putin called for expanding cooperation in the field of technology transfer and foreign investment in Russia.

He said that work is continuing to develop an international payment system that is independent of the West.

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President Putin stressed that the Ukrainian government has usurped power and does not enjoy legitimacy. Regarding the war in eastern Ukraine, he said that Russian forces had “liberated” 47 settlements since the beginning of the year.

These are numbers that cannot be confirmed from independent sources. But there seems to be a view in both the West and Ukraine that Russian forces have made progress on the Eastern Front in recent weeks.

Putin also said that any peace negotiations must take into account “facts on the ground”, also reiterating the position that Ukraine cannot rely on controlling its entire territory.

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