The second round of talks between Vladimir Putin and the Bulgarian President Georgi Parvanov will be held in Moscow on Saturday with full participation of the respective delegations. The first round involved a "close-panel" discussion in Sochi where the Russian president was spending his vacations.
According to the Kremlin officials, "the sides will pay close attention to the vital international issues. In particular, Russia "is willing to cooperate more closely with Bulgaria in fighting against the global threats and other present challenges and in strengthening the European and regional security, especially considering the fact that Bulgaria presides at the UN Security Council in September this year."
The Russian and the Bulgarian Presidents intend to "seriously discuss the key issues in the Balkans - the situation in Macedonia and in Kosovo, the evolution of statehood in Yugoslavia, and the difficulties of the peace process in Bosnia and Herzegovina," reported the RIA Novosti source.
In his turn, the Bulgarian President mentioned another possible topic of discussion. Shortly before his visit, he told the journalists that he had received Putin's message about the situation around the Pankisi Gorge. Parvanov said that he intends to express his view of the problem during the present talks."
During the meeting the Presidents will also pay close attention to the trade and economic cooperation between two countries. From the Kremlin's standpoint, such cooperation "is the cornerstone of the renewal of the Russian-Bulgarian relations."
According to RIA Novosti sources, "increasing our efforts in the privatization of fuel and energy infrastructures, and transportation and tourism industries will play a major role in strengthening our positions in Bulgaria."
In addition, the Kremlin officials specifically underlined the fact that Russia supports the idea of transforming Bulgaria into "the regional energy transit and distribution center of the South-East Europe. At the same time, this support "is directly tied to our continuing assistance in the modernization of the "Kozlodui" nuclear power plant. As a possible option Russia is considering to increase the supply of gas to the neighboring with Bulgaria countries while using the Bulgarian infrastructure.
According to the Deputy Chief of the Kremlin Administration Sergei Prikhodko, during the meeting in Sochi, the Presidents "discussed in detail the issues of cooperation in the area of the fuel and energy production and distribution."
The major issue on the agenda was the supply of Russian oil and gas to Bulgaria with the subsequent refining of those fuels at the local facilities, which are presently being built (partially in partnership with Russia) in Bulgaria.
As Prikhodko mentioned, Parvanov " also expressed Bulgarian interest in widening the cooperation in the sphere of energy industry."
One of the Russian experts, who participated in the preparation of the visit, told RIA Novosti correspondent that "after Georgi Parvanov took the reigns of power in Bulgaria, the relations between the two countries have become depoliticized, they return to the basis of human values." At the same time he emphasized that despite the pragmatic approach toward the bilateral relations, Moscow thinks it's necessary to "preserve the enormous historical potential that closely ties Russia and Bulgaria."
Stating that the Russians continue to regard the Bulgarians as brothers, the expert said that the meeting between Putin and Parvanov in Sochi "emphasizes the warm and friendly atmosphere of the Russian-Bulgarian relations."
According to RIA Novosti, while discussing the perspectives of cooperation in the cultural and humanitarian spheres, the Presidents are expected to schedule a series of events dedicated to the 125th anniversary of the end of the Russo-Turkish war and the liberation of Bulgaria.