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Russian Official Invites Greece To Join BRICS Bank

May 12, 2015 (EIRNS)—Russia has officially extended to Greece an invitation to become the sixth member of the BRICS New Development Bank (NDB), according to a report in Russia Today. The invitation was made by Russian Deputy Finance Minister Sergey Storchak on May 11 during a phone conversation with Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, according to a statement on Greece’s Syriza party website.

"The Prime Minister thanked Storchak and said he was pleasantly surprised by the invitation for Greece to be the sixth member of the BRICS Development Bank. Tsipras said Greece is interested in the offer, and promised to thoroughly examine it. He will have a chance to discuss the invitation with the other BRICS leaders during the 2015 International Economic Forum in St. Petersburg,"

the statement said. The St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF) is scheduled for June 18-20 this year.

Storchak granted a lengthy interview to Greece’s ANA-MPA news agency published yesterday, in which he detailed how Greece would become the sixth member of the BRICS bank.

RT comments that Russia and Greece have been strengthening economic cooperation to deal with similar problems. "While Russia is stuck in a so-called ’sanctions war’ with the EU and the U.S., Greece is struggling to repay its multibillion-euro debt to the Troika of international lenders—the IMF, the ECB and the European Commission."

RT points to a number of "strategic deals with Russia" that were worked out when Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras visited Moscow in April, "including participation in the Turkish Stream project that will deliver Russian gas to Europe via Greece."