Russian envoy to India Nikolai Kudashev
Russian envoy to India Nikolai Kudashev

Russia hopeful to complete free trade agreement between EEU, India: Envoy

ANI | Updated: Dec 23, 2019 18:48 IST

New Delhi [India], Dec 23 (ANI): Asserting that Russia and India are examining ambitious projects in multiple sectors, Russian envoy Nikolai Kudashev on Monday said that Moscow is hopeful to reach a free trade agreement between the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) and India by 2020.
Addressing the media on Russia-India Special and Privileged Strategic Partnership in 2019, Kudashev said that in the ongoing year India and Russia's time tested friendship has witnessed "extraordinary developments".
He said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Russian President Vladimir Putin are expected to meet many times in 2020 including in Moscow's Red Square on May 9, 2020, for the 75th anniversary of the Victory in the Great Patriotic War.
Eurasian Economic Union (EEC) is a council of five-member -- Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Belarus and Armenia to ensure the free movement of goods, services, labour and capital between the states.
"In 2020, we are hopeful about an early conclusion of the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) and India, a next round of the Russian-Indian Strategic Economic Dialogue with the focus on transport, agriculture, small and medium enterprises, industrial collaboration and digital transformation, further extension of the use of national currencies in trade," he said.
"Our Leaders, President Putin and Prime Minister Modi are expected to meet many times in 2020 -- at celebrations on May 9 in Moscow's Red Square dedicated to the 75th anniversary of the Victory in the Great Patriotic War, BRICS and SCO Summits under the Russian Chairmanship in these both vital platforms," Kudashev added.
Underlining that Moscow and New Delhi are about to reach a new level of energy security partnership by increasing oil and natural gas supplies, the envoy said that Russia is aimed at re-establishing the direct Vladivostok-Chennai maritime route in order to raise the efficiency of the North-South Transport Corridor.
"We are about to reach a new level of energy security partnership by increasing
oil and natural gas supplies by introducing long-term arrangements in this regard as
well as deepening investment cooperation in India and Russia, taking into account
lucrative opportunities in the Russian Arctic offered to Indian companies," Kudashev said.
"We are aimed to re-establishing the direct Vladivostok-Chennai maritime route, to raise the efficiency of the North-South Transport Corridor," he further said.
The Russian ambassador said that Moscow sees "potential for cross-sector cooperation with India springing from such Indian national programs as Make in India, Digital India, Smart Cities, as there is a lot of common ground and mutually enriching experience".
"We are examining ambitious projects in metallurgy and engineering, pharmaceuticals, infrastructure, transport, e-governance, information technologies and many others," he added.
The envoy asserted that Moscow is looking to further develop military dialogue and deepen counter-terrorism cooperation between the two countries and is looking forward to the next rounds of joint military exercises.
"We look forward to the next rounds of joint military exercises after we recently completed one of the largest tri-services exercise INDRA-2019 here in India," Kudashev said.
Both sides will further develop its military dialogue and deepen counter-terrorism cooperation bilaterally and in the framework of BRICS, SCO, RIC and other relevant formats, the envoy said. (ANI)

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