Speaking today at the International Economic Forum in St. Petersburg, Russian President Vladimir Putin called on American entrepreneurs to help kickstart dialogue between the two countries.
“Help us restore normal political dialogue,” Putin said. “I’m asking the American side on behalf of Russia to help the newly elected President Donald Trump and the administration of the United States.”
Putin indicated that relations between Russia and the U.S. are at their lowest point since the Cold War. Despite the fact that Russia and America maintain dialogue within the G20 or APEC, the "foundation" of cooperation has largely been destroyed, he said.
The political will required to resolve issues of practical mutual interest is required from both Russia and the U.S., Putin said, adding that he hoped business dialogue between Russian and American entrepreneurs would contribute to a favorable environment for the restoration of ties.
“[I am] certain, that the normalization of bilateral relations is the interests of both countries, and we will continue the dialogue with the President of the United States of America Donald Trump and the new administration,” Putin said.
Russia has been attempting to launch a detente with the U.S. since the start of Donald Trump’s presidency. State Secretary Rex Tillerson visited Moscow in April and met with Putin and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov. No breakthrough agreements were reached.