When meeting in the Kremlin, Vladimir Putin told the former Finnish prime minister Speaker Paavo Lipponen that parliamentary links between Russia and Finland were expected to make a contribution to progress in bilateral relations.
In the opinion of the Russian president, Russian-Finnish relations are developing steadily.
Putin welcomed the opportunity to have a session with Lipponen: "We seldom see each other. This is connected with your changed functions and we are happy that you have not ignored the opportunity to come to Moscow."
For his part, Paavo Lippnen informed about the scheduled meetings with Duma Speaker Boris Gryzlov and Senate Speaker Sergey Mironov he looked forward to.
He also noted that Finland viewed with enthusiasm the preference given to democratic growth in Russian politics.
The Finnish speaker made a point of the positive development of bilateral cooperation and expressed hope that Russia would become Finland's major trade partner in ten years.
Vladimir Putin agreed with his Finnish guest and also expressed his hopes.