Greek prime minister, Russian president to meet in Moscow on Wednesday

Greek prime minister, Russian president to meet in Moscow on Wednesday
02:07 8 Aprel 2015
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The sides are expected to discuss Russian gas supplies to the European country, as well as other regional issues, Spuntiknews reported.

Last week, Greek Energy Minister Panagiotis Lafazanis after a meeting with his Russian counterpart Alexander Novak and Russian energy giant Gazprom CEO Alexei Miller said that Athens had asked for a cut in the price it pays for Russian natural gas.

Lafazanis also expressed his support for Russia's planned Turkish stream pipeline project, expressing support for the idea of extending the gas route to Greece.

Earlier this week, the Russian daily Kommersant, citing an anonymous government source, said that the Russian government is willing to hold talks with Greece on the possible allocation of new loans and a discount on the price of gas.

Athens also hopes Moscow will lift its embargo on Greek food, which was imposed on all countries within the European Union, after sanctions were introduced by the EU against Russia over its alleged role in the Ukrainian crisis. Tsipras repeatedly expressed disappointment over the Western anti-Russia sanctions, saying that the measures are ineffective.

The state visit comes as Greece struggles to repay its loans to its international creditors. Greece's debt to the troika of creditors that includes the IMF, the European Union and the European Central Bank (ECB), is estimated at some $270 billion. The country must repay $22.5 billion in interest this year.

The creditors insist on Greece reforming its economy with the bailout deal set to expire in late June.

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