Comment by the Information and Press Department on Acting Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s talks with Ecuadoran Minister of Foreign Affairs Maria Fernanda Espinosa
On May 15−17, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Ecuador Maria Fernanda Espinosa will be in Moscow on a working visit. The talks she will hold with Sergey Lavrov on May 16 should give new momentum to the entire range of Russian-Ecuadoran ties and reaffirm the two countries’ intention to boost their strategic relations.
Ecuador is Russia’s leading partner in Latin America and internationally. The two countries hold similar principled views on the main global issues. Ecuador is advocating the concept of a multipolar world and a harmonious system of international relations based on international law and non-interference in the internal affairs of others, a political settlement of crises and non-use of force to change regimes.
Dialogue between the Russian and Ecuadoran foreign ministries is substantial and based on mutual trust. The two countries’ foreign ministers meet regularly; the last time they met was on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York in September 2017. The sides also hold interdepartmental consultations.
Maria Fernanda Espinosa, who co-chairs the Russian-Ecuadoran Intergovernmental Commission for Trade and Economic Cooperation, will attend its fifth meeting, which will be held in Moscow on May 14−15.
Bilateral relations in trade, the economy and investment are developing consistently. According to the Federal Customs Service of Russia, bilateral trade increased by 8.4 per cent in 2017 and exceeded $1.5 billion.
Russia and Ecuador are implementing large joint projects in energy and promoting interaction in agriculture and industry. There are plans to launch new initiatives in pharmaceutics, information technology and communications. The sides are also working to improve the legal framework of their cooperation.
Education, cultural and humanitarian ties are a major part of bilateral relations. Ecuador holds a leading place in Latin America for the number of applicants to Russian universities (97 government scholarships were allocated for the 2017/2018 academic year). Taken together, this is enhancing the understanding and sympathy between our people.
Ecuador is playing a leading role in integration processes in Latin America, which is very important in the context of the region’s growing role and influence in international affairs. Russia is ready to strengthen cooperation with Ecuador within influential Latin American associations such as the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) and the Union of South American Nations (UNASUR).