Russia – India: an Enduring Partnership in a Changing World

Prime Minister of the Republic of India H.E. Mr. Narendra Modi and President of the Russian Federation H.E. Mr. Vladimir V. Putin met for the 19th edition of the Annual Bilateral Summit in New Delhi on October 4-5, 2018. India-Russia cooperation is based on the solid foundations of the 1971 Treaty of Peace, Friendship and Cooperation between the Republic of India and the USSR, 1993 Treaty of Friendship and Cooperation between the Republic of India and the Russian Federation, 2000 Declaration on Strategic Partnership between the Republic of India and the Russian Federation and 2010 Joint Statement elevating the Partnership to a Special and Privileged Strategic Partnership. Cooperation between India and Russia spans across the whole gamut of sectors and rests on the fundamental pillars of political and strategic cooperation, military and security cooperation, cooperation in the spheres of economy, energy, industry, science and technology, and cultural and humanitarian cooperation.

Soviet Stamp celebrating Indo-Soviet friendship & Cooperation

India and Russia highly evaluated the contemporary relevance and significance of the informal summit in Sochi on May 21, 2018 which was a unique meeting in international diplomacy, reflecting the deep trust and confidence between Prime Minister Modi and President Putin, underlining the desire of both countries to maintain regular contacts and hold frequent consultations on issues of mutual interest, and further enhanced mutual coordination and convergence of views on all major issues. The Sochi Summit manifested the role of interaction and cooperation between India and Russia in building a multi-polar world order. The two Sides agreed to continue the practice of such informal meetings and to maintain strategic communication at all levels on a regular basis.

The Sides reaffirmed their commitment to the Special and Privileged Strategic Partnership between India and Russia. They declared that this relationship is an important factor for global peace and stability and appreciated each other’s respective roles as major powers with common responsibilities for maintaining global peace and stability.

Both Sides agreed that their relationship is mature and confident, covering all areas and is marked by deep trust, mutual respect and close understanding of each other’s position. They reaffirmed that being multicultural, multilingual and multireligious societies, India and Russia bring civilizational wisdom to address modern day challenges. Together, they contribute to creating a more interconnected and diverse world.

The Sides called upon all states to work towards the lessening of global tensions and promoting the ideals of tolerance, cooperation, transparency and openness in inter-state relations. They stressed that the primary challenge in large parts of the world remains ensuring rapid and environmentally sustainable economic development, removal of poverty, reducing inequality among and within states, and providing basic health care. India and Russia pledged to cooperate with each other to achieve these goals.

The Sides noted with satisfaction the intensification of contacts between the two countries, in all spheres – more than 50 visits at ministerial level, which have injected new vigour into their relationship. Subsequent to the successful implementation of the Protocol on Foreign Office Consultations for the period 2017-18, the Sides agreed to extend the period of Consultations for five more years (2019-2023) and signed a Protocol to this effect. Russia welcomed the appointment of Honorary Consuls General of India in Ekaterinburg and Astrakhan, which would further facilitate closer interaction amongst people and regions of both Sides.

The Sides welcomed the agreements reached in November 2017 between their concerned authorities, for cooperation on internal security, drug trafficking and disaster management, including the Joint Action Plan between the Narcotics Control Bureau, Ministry of Home Affairs of the Republic of India and the Ministry of Interior of the Russian Federation for the period of 2018-2020. The Indian Side acknowledged the Russian Side’s technical expertise in the field of disaster management and agreed to explore cooperation, including through training of trainers and development of emergency response structures.

The Sides noted that the successful conclusion of the 70th anniversary celebrations of the establishment of diplomatic relations between India and Russia witnessed enthusiastic response among people of both countries and further consolidated people-to-people ties. The Sides are satisfied with the implementation of the Cultural Exchange Programme for 2017-2019 signed in 2017. They welcomed annual Russian Festivals in India and Indian Festivals in Russia and highly appreciated the ongoing youth exchange programme, exchange of writers and reciprocal support of the National Film Festivals. The Sides welcomed mutual growth in tourism flows in the last two years, and agreed to facilitate this positive trend. India complimented Russia for successful organization of the 2018 FIFA World Cup. The Sides recognized the immense contribution made by the Institute of Oriental Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences, to the promotion of India-Russia relations over several decades. Prime Minister Modi underlined that India would contribute to the success of the 200 year celebrations of the foundation of the Institute.

The Sides welcomed the outcomes of the 23rd meeting, co-chaired by Deputy Prime Minister of the Russian Federation Yuri I. Borisov and Minister of External Affairs of the Republic of India Sushma Swaraj, of the India – Russia Intergovernmental Commission on Trade, Economy, Science, Technology and Cultural Cooperation, held in Moscow on September 14, 2018.

The Sides reviewed the progress on the achievement of the goal to increase two-way investment to USD 30 billion by the year 2025 and noted with satisfaction that both countries were on the way to achieving this target. They noted that in 2017 bilateral trade increased by more than 20% and agreed to work towards its further increase and diversification. The Sides expressed their support to promoting bilateral trade in national currencies.

The Sides noted that the first meeting of the Strategic Economic Dialogue between NITI Aayog of India and the Ministry of Economic Development of the Russian Federation would be held later in 2018 in Russia.

The Sides appreciated the work done by “Invest India’’ to facilitate Russian investors in India and the planned launch of a “Single Window Service” by the Ministry of Economic Development of the Russian Federation for facilitating operation of Indian companies in Russia.

The Sides welcomed the holding of the India-Russia Business Summit on the margins of the 19th Annual Summit on October 4-5, 2018 in New-Delhi with the participation of large business delegations from both sides, representing important areas of bilateral cooperation, sending a strong signal of the willingness and capacity of the business sectors of both countries to further strengthen economic, trade and investment partnerships.

The Sides reviewed progress in the implementation of Priority Investment Projects in the spheres of mining, metallurgy, power, oil & gas, railways, pharmaceuticals, Information Technology, chemicals, infrastructure, automobile, aviation, space, shipbuilding and manufacturing of different equipment. The Sides welcomed the establishment of a pharmaceutical plant by Advance Pharma Company in Russia. The Indian Side conveyed its intention to increase import of fertilizers from Russia. The Sides noted the importance of expansion of collaboration in aluminium sector.

They welcomed the signing of the MoU between National Small Industries Corporation of India and the Russian Small and Medium Business Corporation.

The Sides underscored the vital importance of increasing connectivity between them. They called for the development of the International North-South Transport Corridor (INSTC) through intensified efforts by finalizing pending issues related to Customs authorities, development of road and rail infrastructure and financial facilitation through bilateral discussions as well as discussions with other partner countries at the earliest. The Sides welcomed the proposed trilateral meeting between the Republic of India, the Russian Federation and the Islamic Republic of Iran on the sidelines of “Transport Week – 2018” in Moscow, on the issue of Indian goods transportation through the territory of Iran to Russia. The Indian Side informed the Russian Side of its accession to the Customs Convention on International Transport of Goods under cover of TIR Carnets. The Sides agreed to make efforts to convene the INSTC Ministerial and Coordination meeting on priority.

The Sides praised the level of cooperation achieved in diamond sector, including the signing of new long-term contracts for rough diamond supplies by PJSC ALROSA to Indian companies, opening of the ALROSA representative office in Mumbai and joint financing by the ALROSA and the Gem & Jewellery Export Promotion Council of India of the International Diamonds Producers Association on the development of programmes of generic marketing of diamonds, including in the Indian market. Both Sides noted recent investments by Indian companies in the diamond manufacturing in the Russian Far East.

The Sides agreed to explore opportunities of joint collaboration in precious metals, minerals, natural resources and forest produce, including timber, through joint investments, production, processing and skilled labour.

The Russian Side invited the Indian Side to invest in the Russian Far East. The Indian Side welcomed the decision to open an office of the Far East Agency in Mumbai. The Indian delegation, which was led by the Minister for Commerce & Industry, and Civil Aviation Suresh Prabhu, participated in the Eastern Economic Forum in Vladivostok in September 2018. A high level Russian delegation would visit India to organize investment road-shows and promote greater Indian investments in the Far East.

Civil nuclear cooperation between India and Russia is an important component of strategic partnership contributing to India’s energy-security and its commitments under the Paris Agreement on Climate Change. The Sides noted the progress achieved in the construction of the remainder of the six power units at Kudankulam NPP as well as the efforts being made in the components manufacturing for localization. The Sides welcomed consultations on the new Russian designed NPP in India, as well as on the NPP equipment joint manufacturing of nuclear equipment; cooperation in third countries.

The Sides highlighted the progress achieved in fulfillment of the agreements envisaged in the Memorandum of Understanding on trilateral cooperation in implementation of the Rooppur Nuclear Power Project in Bangladesh.The sides expressed satisfaction over signing of the Action Plan for Prioritization and Implementation of Cooperation Areas in the Nuclear Field Identified Jointly.

The Sides noted that Military and Military-Technical cooperation between the two countries is an important pillar of their strategic partnership. They welcomed the forthcoming meeting of the Indian-Russian Intergovernmental Commission on Military-Technical cooperation to be held in December 2018. The Roadmap for Military Cooperation has paved way for greater interaction between the militaries of both countries, including in training, exchange of senior functionaries of the militaries, Staff talks and Exercises. The Russian Side positively evaluated the Indian participation in the Army Games 2018, Army 2018 and Moscow Conference on International Security. Both Sides commended the successful completion of the first ever Tri-Services Exercise INDRA 2017 and committed to continue their Joint Military Exercises – INDRA Navy, INDRA Army and Avia INDRA – in 2018.

The Sides, mentioning the results of the 10th anniversary BRICS Summit in South Africa in July 2018, acknowledged the intention of India and Russia to continue productive interaction in order to enhance strategic partnership within the association, defending priorities of building fair, just, and multipolar world order on the basis of strict observance of international law and the UN Charter.

The Sides expressed their satisfaction on the progress in India – Russia relations, shared interests and similar positions on issues of bilateral and international importance and agreed to continue this trajectory of closer cooperation, coordination and consolidation of gains to surge ahead the Special and Privileged Strategic Partnership of India and Russia for the mutual prosperity of people of both countries.

President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin thanked Prime Minister of the Republic of India Narendra Modi for the hospitality extended and invited him to visit Russia for the 20th Annual Summit in 2019. Prime Minister Narendra Modi accepted the invitation with great pleasure.




Leave a Comment