PM in Moscow: First ‘Make in India’ Defence Partnership

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Moscow: India and Russia on Thursday signed 16 agreements across various sectors  including the manufacturing of nuclear reactors, solar energy plants, railways and the first partnership in defence manufacturing — during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s two-day visit to Russia.

“The agreement on manufacture of Kamov 226 helicopter in India is the first project for a major defence platform under Make in India,” the Prime Minister said during his joint address with Russia’s President Vladimir Putin.

“The pace of our cooperation in nuclear energy is increasing. We are making progress on 12 Russian nuclear reactors at two sites,” he added.

The Prime Minister visited Moscow for the India-Russia Summit – an event that is being held annually since 2000.  The partnership this year focused to intensify synergy on defence, trade, hydrocarbons and nuclear energy.

But there was no announcement on several other expected defence projects, including a second Akula 2 class nuclear attack submarine, or the five S-400 surface to air missile systems.

On the economic front, it had been a “very good day,” foreign secretary S Jaishankar said.

“We saw a lot agreements in the field of energy. Important agreement has been signed on solar plant as well… some of it was new. Some of it was building up,” he added.

While attending a meet of business leaders from both nations, PM Modi invited Russian CEOs to invest in sectors like aerospace, infrastructure and diamond, and said his government has created a favourable environment to boost economic growth.

Pushing for upping economic ties, PM Modi and President Putin have agreed to institutionalise the CEO’s Forum, with two meetings every year, one to be held in India and the other in Russia.

“As I look to the future, I see Russia as a significant partner in India’s economic transfer and in shaping a balanced, multi-polar world,” he said.

In his address, President Putin said, “India a great power carrying out a balanced and responsible foreign policy.”

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