German politicians have been visiting Russia quite often – a strong Bavarian partner is on the way

Neither sanctions nor international pressure frighten one of Russia’s main trade and economic partners – Bavaria. The leadership of the federal state does not want to leave Moscow outside the framework of political dialogue. 

The head of the region, Marcus Zeder, will meet with Vladimir Putin on January 29 in Moscow, and they will have something to discuss.

The Bavarian Prime Minister told the German press that the trip was agreed with the federal government and personally Angela Merkel. The program of the working visit, he stressed, is exclusively business.

Meetings with Putin for high-ranking Bavarians are not uncommon. Zeder’s predecessor, Horst Seehofer, who now heads the Ministry of Internal Affairs, met with Putin twice in 2017. By the way, his Zeder was replaced not only as Prime Minister, but also in the Christian Social Union (CSU) party, which creates a single faction in the Bundestag with the Christian Democratic Union (CDU). He headed it in January 2019.

Zeder is a supporter of the development of relations with Russia not only in the economy. He believes that Moscow has no place in the “penalty box” in world politics. Focused on the transatlantic partnership, he has consistently advocated dialogue with Russia.

Supported by the Bavarian leader and the Nord Stream 2 project. Zeder wonders:

“Why should gas transportation from Russia through a pipeline through Ukraine be more reliable than direct deliveries from Russia to Germany?”

For Germany, any options that will help ensure a stable energy supply are important.

Bavaria is, without exaggeration, a major partner for Russia. The region’s GDP in 2017 was estimated at 594.4 billion euros – the seventh place in the European Union. Moreover, the federal state is one of the world’s key suppliers of goods and services: export brings Bavaria every second euro. And among the world-famous regional companies – BMW, Audi, MAN, Siemens, Airbus, Adidas, Hochland.

Bavarian enterprises do not skimp on investments, invest in Russian production, and open representative offices. In Kaliningrad, for example, since 1999, BMW cars have been assembled, and in June 2019 it became known that the German company Durr will begin construction of a new plant.

The Ministry of Economy of the region sends delegations to Moscow every year to maintain and develop economic contacts with Russian partners. The representative office of Bavaria regularly holds meetings, forums, round tables and other events in Russia.