15:27 GMT04 December 2020
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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Russian President Vladimir Putin and his US counterpart, Donald Trump, have expressed, during their phone conversation, deep concerns over the spread of the coronavirus across the world, and have agreed to look into ways to boost cooperation on fighting COVID-19, the Kremlin said on Monday.

    "The heads of states have expressed deep concerns over the scale of the global spread of the coronavirus. They have briefed each other on the measures to counter this threat, which are implemented in Russia and the United States. They have discussed possibilities for the two countries' closer cooperation on the matter", the Kremlin said in a statement.

    Putin and Trump have also discussed bilateral relations, agreeing upon the continuation of personal contacts, according to the Kremlin.

    "They have also exchanged opinions on the current state of the global oil market. They have agreed upon Russian-US consultations on the matter, through energy ministers", the Kremlin added.

    The conversation was held earlier in the day at Washington's initiative.

    Trump and Putin have agreed on the importance of stability in global energy markets in a phone talk, the White House said in a statement.

    According to the statement, Trump told Putin about the difficult situation in Venezuela and stressed the importance of a democratic transition in the Latin American country.

    Oil Market Turmoil Amid Pandemic

    The new coronavirus, which originated in China in December 2019, has swept across the entire globe, infecting 740,685 people in almost every nation. Some 35,045 have died since the outbreak became a pandemic and forced countries around the world to undertake tough measures and restrictions to contain its spread.

    The virus also sent the global oil market reeling after OPEC members failed to agree on an extension of production cuts beyond March. The expected demand slump has since almost halved oil prices, with major benchmarks falling to record-breaking lows in the past weeks.

    talks, market, Oil, energy, US, Russia, coronavirus, COVID-19
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