"There are many areas that were not affected by sanctions, where, as we see, other European countries develop economic cooperation. We have seen how year by year the export of Spanish products to Russia and Russian goods to Spain has been reducing. On both sides, there was a desire to reverse this trend. The economic situation in Russia and in Spain has improved, allowing [us to] start the year with good indicators," Ybanez said in an interview.
Spanish entrepreneurs wanted to cooperate in diversification of the Russian economy, which remained dependent on oil and gas sector, the Spanish ambassador noted.
"Spain and its companies want to cooperate in this process and can share experience, technology," Ybanez added.
Among the most promising areas of bilateral cooperation, Ybanez highlighted transport infrastructure, renewable energy and telecommunications.
The ambassador also stressed good prospects of cooperation in the field of tourism.
"Spain has much to share with Russia in the tourism sector and to help its rapid development," Ybanez emphasized. In addition, the ambassador expressed hope that Spanish tourism companies, hotel chains in particular, would expand their presence in the Russian market.
At the request of the Russian side a bilateral working group of small and medium-sized businesses would be created, the diplomat stated. As small and medium-sized enterprises are the foundation of the Spanish economy, "the system of the integrated support for this kind of companies can be very useful for Russia."
The business forum will be attended by representatives of enterprises in energy, railways, and construction sectors, companies dealing with manufacturing of construction materials as well as with automotive and agricultural sectors, the head of Spanish diplomatic mission in Russia outlined.