The Indian prime minister and Russian president have agreed to dismantle all barriers to boost trade between the regions of the two exclusive strategic partners.
After meeting for the fourth time in 2019 on the sidelines of the BRICS Summit in Brasilia, the two leaders noted the “stability and progress made in the imports of oil and natural gas”.
President Putin highlighted the potential of the Arctic region in terms of natural gas and invited India to invest in the region.
“The $25 billion target for bilateral trade by 2025 has already been achieved. The two leaders decided that the 1st Bilateral Regional Forum at the level of Russian Provinces and Indian States be held next year to dismantle trade barriers at the regional level,” the Indian foreign ministry said in a statement on Thursday.
During the meeting, Modi specifically mentioned the successful visits of Indian Defence Minister Rajnath Singh to Russia where the minister confirmed the participation of an Indian military contingent on the 75th Anniversary of the victory in the Second World War next year. Russia holds a military parade in Moscow’s Red Square every year on 9 May to celebrate the defeat of Nazi Germany.
Leaders of BRICS, which includes five emerging economies - Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa, have criticised what Russian President Vladimir Putin called "politically motivated protectionism" at a time of global economic slowdown.
Likewise, Chinese President Xi Jinping said at the forum, that "protectionist and bullying counter-currents bring shocks to international trade" which adds to the downward pressure on the world economy.
The leaders of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS) also called for increased trade between the countries. BRICS countries account for 50% of the world's economic growth.
Earlier this year, the Russian export support group had established its office in India's Mumbai to promote bilateral trade and economic relations.
The two countries have set targets to achieve bilateral trade worth $30 billion by 2025 while expanding industrial cooperation, creating new technology and investment partnerships, especially in advanced high-tech areas, and finding new avenues and forms of cooperation.
In addition, “Work on promoting mutual settlements of payments in national currencies will be continued,” as the two countries resolved earlier this September, during the annual summit in Vladivostok.