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Image courtesy of the Kremlin

Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Friday he was hopeful Rosneft and Cuba’s state-owned  Cupet could begin joint exploration of Cuba’s offshore oil reserves “in the very near future.”

Rosneft and Zarubezhneft both agreed to help Cupet explore offshore in Cuba.

Putin also said several Russian companies were interested in Cuba’s new special economic zone at the port of Mariel near Havana.