While discussing ways to intensify investment cooperation, Putin singled out the need to stabilize the Greek economy as a stepping stone to more detailed agreements. At the same time, he pointed out that Russian businesses had a considerable investment potential and could be more active and confident, given the right economic climate.
Putin and Tsipras discussed prospects for bilateral energy cooperation, the former emphasizing that this cooperation was of strategic importance for both countries. According to official statistics, Russia accounts for around 60% of all gas supplies to Greece. In addition to this, Greece is increasingly interested in joining Russia’s infrastructure projects envisaging gas supplies to Europe via the southern route, specifically the Turkish Stream that has reached the coast of Turkey. Russian gas can also be delivered by the Trans-Adriatic pipeline intended to supply gas to Europe from Caspian Sea fields. Tsipras noted that Greece’s accession to Russian southern gas supply projects would give it a bigger role in the regional energy hub. Simultaneously he admitted that the European Commission was engaging in double standards in its approach to a number of Russian energy projects in Europe. A case in point is the South Stream project that was buried several years ago for political reasons. Had it been implemented, Greece would have been the main transit country in South and Southeast Europe. According to the Greek prime minister, he regarded this approach to energy matters as counterproductive and contradicting the interests of most regional players. He also expressed hope that the situation would change for the better in the near future.