India-Russia to ink pacts, discuss important issues during Putin’s visit

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India and Russia are set to ink 10 agreements in various areas following the annual summit talks between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Russian President Vladimir Putin today, which will also see the two sides hold the inaugural 2+2 dialogue between their foreign and defence ministers.

President Putin is to arrive in India today afternoon and head straight to the meeting venue in Hyderabad House. He returns to Russia after the talks are wrapped up.

PM Modi and President Putin will first lead meetings of their delegations and then hold a one-on-one meeting over dinner.

The Russian delegation will include Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu and Rosneft CEO Igor Sechin.

“About 10 bilateral agreements will be signed, which are quite important, and include some semi-confidential ones,” said Russian Presidential Aide Yuri Ushakov.

The two sides will also be exploring the possibilities of the joint development of hydrocarbons on the Arctic shelf and Russia’s Far East.

 

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“The possibilities of joint development of hydrocarbons on the Arctic shelf and in Russia’s Far East are under consideration,” Ushakov said, Tass reported.

President Putin, in remarks on Wednesday at the Kremlin said: “Next week, I will visit India. During talks with Prime Minister Modi, we will outline new large-scale initiatives for the further development of the especially privileged Russian-Indian relationship, the Russian-Indian strategic partnership.

“This partnership brings real mutual benefit to both states. Bilateral trade shows good dynamics; ties are actively developing in the energy sector, innovation, space, and the production of coronavirus vaccines and medicines. There is extensive cooperation in the defence sector, including through the creation of joint ventures.

“India is one of the authoritative centres of the multipolar world with a foreign policy philosophy and priorities that are closely aligned with our own. I am convinced that, relying on strong traditions of friendship and mutual understanding, we will continue working together to expand the full range of Russian-Indian ties,” he said.

India’s Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson said on Thursday that the day will begin with Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and his Russian counterpart Sergey Shoigu co-chairing the India-Russia Inter-Governmental Commission on Military Technical Cooperation, while External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar will hold a bilateral meeting with his counterpart Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.

“These meetings will be followed by the inaugural meeting of the newly-instituted 2+2 dialogue mechanism at the level of the Foreign and Defence ministers,” he said.

“Both ministers are expected to discuss bilateral, regional and international political and defence issues with this format, that we have with very few countries,” he added.

In the afternoon, the 21st India-Russia annual summit will be held. “We look forward to welcoming President Putin to New Delhi for the summit,” he said.

Prime Minister Modi and President Putin “will review the state and prospects of bilateral relations and discuss ways to further strengthen the strategic partnership between the two countries”.

“The summit will of course offer an opportunity to exchange views on regional, multilateral and international issues of mutual interest,” he said.

A joint statement is proposed to be issued at the end of the summit “which will encapsulate the discussions, the understandings, and agreements signed during and also in the run up to the summit”.

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