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Russia and India trade growing
December 24, 2012, 9:13 pm

Russian President Vladimir Putin and Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. [AP]

Russian President Vladimir Putin and Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. [AP]

Russian President Vladimir Putin arrived in India where he and India’s Prime Minister Manmohan Singh struck two contracts worth $2.9 billion.

Russia will supply India with 71 Mi-17 V5 helicopters, worth $1.3 billion and 42 Sukhoi Su-30 fighter jets, worth a $1.6 billion.

The sides discussed various issues including trade, security, defence, investment and energy.

Prime Minister Singh said the talks included discussions on the security situation in the region, including Afghanistan.

“India and Russia share the objective of a stable, united, democratic and prosperous Afghanistan, free from extremism,” he said.

President Putin stressed the importance of co-operation between the countries.

“We attach particular significance to bilateral trade and investment relations. The growing economic potential of India and Russia is mutually complementary in many respects.

“Our trade turnover has overcome the consequences of global crisis, and in 2012 we expect to reach record numbers, over 10 billion USD.

“Our next goal is to reach 20 billion USD already by 2015,” Putin wrote for an article in The Hindu.

Bilateral trade and economic cooperation is actively developing. In January-October 2012 trade increased by 30 per cent against the same period last year.

The revival and strengthening of the relations is often attributed to President Putin.

In past years Russia was India’s major military supplier and amounts by some estimates for 70 per cent of India’s arms purchases.

The two have also worked together on building an advanced fighter plane and a new transport aircraft and have jointly developed a supersonic cruise missile for the Indian Navy.

They are currently developing the next generation of Sukhoi warplanes together.

In The Hindu article Putin also stressed the significance of BRICS cooperation.

“I would like to note that our joint work in the BRICS becomes increasingly intensive. The authority of that association is growing every year, and that is quite natural.

“Our proposed initiatives are aimed at establishing new architecture of multipolar world order,” said Putin.

Daria Chernyshova