MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Earlier in the day, Putin met with Bavarian Minister-President Horst Seehofer, who arrived in Moscow within a delegation of 60 German politicians and businesspeople.
"Bavaria is of course ranking first among other German federal states in terms of volume of trade and economic ties with Russia. What is especially interesting and unexpected is the export of Bavarian enterprises to Russia grew by four percent, while the export from other regions and from Germany in general dropped by 4.8 percent," Putin said at a meeting with Seehofer.
Putin expressed hope that the current visit of the German delegation would further promote bilateral ties.
In October 2016, Seehofer criticized the restrictions on Russia and recalled that certain areas of the Bavarian economy alone had declined 40 percent due to the restrictive measures.
Before the sanctions were imposed, Germany had been one of Russia's major trade partners, but the two countries' trade turnover in 2015 decreased by about a third, and continued to decline in 2016.