New Delhi, Dec 15: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh told that we are looking forward to significantly expand bilateral trade with Russia from the current $8.5 billion, while enhancing ties in a host of areas such as defence, energy, space technology and health.
Prime Minister Singh added that we hope that Indo-Russian bilateral cooperation and consolidating coordination on regional and global issues was in the interest of India and that of global peace and prosperity.
Prime Minister Singh is set to embark on a three-day visit to the Russian capital to attend the annual Indo-Russian Summit, also said that he is “convinced that India-Russia consultation on global issues is more necessary today than ever before”. He also told that his talks with the Kremlin leadership will also cover multilateral issues, notably on ways out of the global economic slowdown.
Prime Minister Singh further told in a pre-departure statement that “there is enormous mutual goodwill in our two countries for each other. Both countries recognise the significant mutual benefit we derive from working together. I will utilise my visit to further expand our bilateral cooperation and further consolidate our coordination on regional and global issues. This is in our national interest and in the interest of global peace and prosperity”.
Dr. Singh said it is very significant that the upcoming India-Russia Annual Summit was taking place against the backdrop of a complex international environment. We were looking forward to an in-depth exchange of views with the Russian leadership on the crisis facing the global economy and the political developments in our extended neighbourhood, including West Asia, Gulf and Afghanistan and the impact of all this on peace and stability in the world.
During his visit, Prime Minister Singh will discuss with Russian President Medvedev ways to further enhance consultations in international forums like the United Nations Security Council, G 20, BRICS as well as the East Asia Summit which Russia has recently joined. He was also looking forward to meeting Prime Minister Vladimir Putin during his visit.