Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks during his annual end-of-year news conference in Moscow on December 14, 2017. Photo: Reuters via Sputnik / Alexei Druzhinin

Russian President Vladimir Putin has been quoted as saying at a press conference last week that industrial developments in the Arctic region are a top priority for Russia and that this will be done in cooperation with China.

The Independent Barents Observer said Putin made notable mention of China in a four-hour long press conference at the Kremlin on December 14 after returning from the official launch of the new Yamal LNG plant and Sabetta sea port in Siberia.

“Putin made clear that the Arctic is a key ground for cooperation with the great Asian power, and underlined that the country “expresses big interest to the Northern Sea Route,” the Norway-based online publication noted.

“I hope we soon will be able to achieve economically far more favorable transportation of goods between Asia and Europe on the Northern Sea Route compared with alternative routes,” Putin was quoted as saying. The president also stressed that “we will in all possible ways encourage China’s use of these advantages.”

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