04:52 GMT +325 September 2018
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    HELSINKI, APRIL 2. /RIA NOVOSTI / -- Relations between the European Union and Russia were the central theme at the meeting between European Trade Commissioner Pascal Lami and Finnish Foreign Trade and Development Minister Paula Lehtomyaki, held in the Foreign Ministry of Finland on Friday.

    The ministerial press service said that Lami is optimistic about the process of talks on the Partnership and Cooperation Agreement between Russia and the EU, hopes that all the disputable matters will be settled before May 1, when the European Union expansion occurs. Lehtomyaki is of the same mind.

    "Finland has always been seeking an active development of relations between the EU and Russia. It is of great economic importance to us because, if differences spring up in Russian-EU relations, Finland is the first to suffer because Russia for is us a very important partner in trade", the Finnish minister said.

    Of great importance to Finland are also the talks on Russia's entering the World Trade Organisation. Commissioner Lami and Minister Lentomyaki are unanimous that the process is going on well and the hope for settling many questions is high. "Still, we would like to hope for a greater progress", Paula Lehtomyaki said. "Russia's membership in the WTO is of great importance for Finland's foreign trade. Progress reached at the talks provides ground for hope", she stressed.

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