21:46 GMT +325 March 2019
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    Russian President Vladimir Putin arrives in Singapore on November 11, 2018.

    Putin Discussed Oil Prices With Trump in Paris

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    Russian President Vladimir Putin is holding a press conference in Singapore after his participation in the 13th East Asia Summit (EAS) and the Russia-ASEAN summit.

    Any politically-motivated restrictions in the economy are a hindrance and hurt everyone, including those who introduce them, Vladimir Putin said at a press conference in Singapore.

    No sanctions can stop cooperation between Russia and the ASEAN countries and the development of their economies, Vladimir Putin added.

    READ MORE: WATCH World Leaders Gather for ASEAN Summit in Singapore

    "This cannot stop development, it is ruled out, it is impossible… so cooperation will continue," Putin said following a visit to Singapore.

    Putin stressed that Russia's non-participation in WEF in Davos will not affect country's economy.

    "It definitely will not affect Russia's authority in world's economy. A country's authority in the world's economy depends, first of all, on its economic power, the economy's structure, results that it shows in terms of technological effectiveness, the GDP growth, macroeconomic indicators such as low inflation, small external debt, the absence of budget deficit or its minimum rate or, what is better, budget surplus, which [Russia] enjoys now," Putin indicated.

    The Russian president added that the Russian authorities, in general, achieved set goals in economy.

    "Nevertheless, such platforms as the Davos forum are useful. When I was vice governor of St. Petersburg, often enough, almost every year I went to Davos. Then, working in Moscow, less and less frequently. Recently I have practically not appeared there. But the platform is good," Putin told reporters.

    Those imposing restrictions on Russian businessmen's participation in WEF impose them against themselves, Vladimir Putin said.

    Vladimir Putin had a brief meeting on Thursday with US Vice President Mike Pence on the sidelines of an international conference in Singapore.

    "There were many meetings, practically with all the partners: with the Japanese prime minister and with the chair of State Council of China today, and the prime minister of Singapore and with the president of South Korea, and I have just spoken to the US vice president on the go," Putin told reporters.

    He added that he and Pence had met and discussed strategic stability as well as the implementation of a new START treaty.

    READ MORE: Russia Ready to Renew Dialogue With US on INF, START, ABM Treaties — Lavrov

    “Any unfriendly steps somehow affect the schedule of work, the schedule of our meetings,” Putin said when asked how a possible second wave of sanctions against Russia could affect the meeting with US President Donald Trump, due to be held at the G20 summit in Buenos Aires.

    Putin believes that strategic stability is the key issue on the agenda of Russia-US talks.

    Putin said that he'd discussed oil prices with US President Donald Trump in Paris. Oil prices could slighty rise or fall, but the current price is not very stable; the current oil price of $70 per barrel suits Russia, he added.

    "What is now, what was just recently — somewhere around $70 — quite suits us if we keep in mind that, as you know, we have budget expenditures calculated with [the price of] $40 per barrel, and this gives us the opportunity to feel confident, to work calmly, stably, to achieve very good results that affect macroeconomics. We will almost certainly have a budget surplus this year," Putin told reporters.

    "By the way, President Trump and I discussed this in Paris, but in any case we talked about it. In recent years, the United States has increased its production significantly, which affects, of course, domestic consumption inside the States," Putin said following a visit to Singapore.

    Europe should get rid of its "phobias" and help the Syrian people if it does not want to face a new influx of migrants, Russian President Vladimir Putin said.

    "If the international community, Europe, above all, does not want to face a new inflow of migrants, it should consider getting rid of some phobias and just help the Syrian people regardless of political affiliations, helping the political process, this is obvious," Putin said at a press conference.

    Russia is ready for full-fledged work in Syria's economy, which would be advantageous for Moscow, the Russian president stressed.

    Vladimir Putin hopes that joint humanitarian aid deliveries in Syria, conducted by Russia as well as France and Germany, will continue.

    "We have carried out some operations with France. Our transport aircraft delivered aid to Syria. I hope this work will continue, not just with France, but with other European countries as well that are all extremely interested in rebuilding Syria," the president said.

    Russia is ready to work with Japan to resolve complicated issues, including that of Kuril Islands, Vladimir Putin said.

    "We have resumed dialogue with our Japanese partners precisely on the basis of the declaration of 1956, this is exactly what our Japanese partners asked us for… We believe that everything we have achieved today has developed on the basis of international legal documents… However, as you know, Japan puts the question differently. We are ready to work with them," Putin told reporters.

    In 1956, the Soviet Union and Japan signed a declaration saying that after signing the peace treaty the Soviet Union would be ready to transfer to Japan two southern islands of the Kuril Ridge. However, the Russian president pointed to the fact that the document "does not say… under which country's sovereignty these islands would remain."

    The two countries ratified the declaration but then "Japan refused to implement these agreements," and so later did the Soviet Union, Putin added.

    "But, indeed, yesterday during our meeting, the [Japanese] prime minister said that Japan was ready to return to the discussion of the issue on the basis of the 1956 declaration," the president noted.

    The EAS has brought together the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) member states and the organization's partners — Australia, China, Japan, India, New Zealand, Russia, South Korea and the United States.

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    ASEAN, Vladimir Putin, Russia, Singapore
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