India-Russia summit: Modi, Putin to review whole range of bilateral ties, says Kwatra

Modi will pay a two-day official visit to Russia from July 8 to 9 at the invitation of Putin for the 22nd India-Russia summit that will review the entire range of multi-faceted ties between the two countries. Putin will host a private dinner for Modi on the day of arrival.
Last Updated : 05 July 2024, 12:11 IST

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New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Russian President Vladimir Putin will review the whole range of bilateral ties, including in areas like defence, investment, energy cooperation, education, culture and people-to-people exchanges, at the upcoming annual India-Russia summit, Foreign Secretary Vinay Kwatra said on Friday.

Modi will pay a two-day official visit to Russia from July 8 to 9 at the invitation of Putin for the 22nd India-Russia summit that will review the entire range of multi-faceted ties between the two countries. Putin will host a private dinner for Modi on the day of arrival.

The two leaders will also share perspectives on "regional and global developments of mutual interest," Kwatra said at a media briefing here ahead of Modi's visit to Russia for the summit.

Sharing details about the Russia itinerary, Kwatra said, as of now, the prime minister is scheduled to arrive in Moscow late afternoon of July 8. The next day, Modi's interactions would include an interface with the Indian community in Russia.

The prime minister will also lay a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Kremlin. And, thereafter he will visit Rosatom pavilion at the exhibition venue in Moscow.

"These engagements will be followed by restricted-level talks between the two leaders, which will then be followed by delegation-level talks led by the honourable prime minister and the Russian President," he added.

The annual India-Russia summit is taking place after three years, and "we attach great importance to it," Kwatra said.

"The issue of early discharge of Indian nationals who have been misled into the service of the Russian Army is expected to figure in the discussions," he added.

After concluding his trip to Russia, Modi will travel to Austria, which will be the first visit by an Indian prime minister to that country in 41 years, the Ministry of External Affairs said on Thursday.

This will be Modi's first trip to Russia in nearly five years. His last visit to that country was in 2019 when he attended an economic conclave in the Far East city of Vladivostok.

This will also be his first visit to Russia since the conflict in Ukraine.

So far, 21 annual summits have taken place alternately in India and Russia. The last summit was held on December 6, 2021 in New Delhi. Putin had visited India to attend the summit.

"The 22nd annual summit between India and Russia would provide an opportunity to the two leaders to review the whole range of bilateral issues, including defence, trade linkages, investment ties, energy cooperation, S&T, education, culture and people-to-people exchanges," the foreign secretary said.

Both sides are currently working on a "series of outcome documents" which would be the result of this summit, he added.

Kwatra said since the last summit, the two leaders met in 2022 in Samarkand on the margins of the SCO Summit in Uzbekistan.

"They have also stayed in touch with each other through several telephonic conversations through these years," he said.

The leaders will also assess the status of bilateral engagements in groupings such as BRICS, Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), G20, East Asia Summit, and the UN, the foreign secretary said.

Other areas of interest will include cooperation across the range of areas.

The last summit saw both sides sealing 28 MoUs and agreements besides coming out with a joint statement titled "India-Russia Partnership for Peace, Progress and Prosperity".

Modi will depart Moscow for Vienna in the afternoon of July 9, Kwatra said.

"India and Russia have a special and privileged partnership since 2020 which has remained resilient in the wake of multiple geopolitical challenges that the world has been facing," he said.

The annual summit between the two leaders is the highest mechanism to steer and drive the cooperation between the two countries.

"Our bilateral exchanges with Russia have also remained fairly frequent over the last year. The two foreign ministers have met several times last year, most recently they met day before yesterday on the sidelines of the SCO. The EAM (external affairs minister) had also visited Moscow and St Petersberg in December last year. And, the two National Security Advisors have also met a few times last year," Kwatra said.

India-Russia bilateral trade has seen a "sharp increase" in 2023-24. It has since touched close to USD 65 billion primarily due to strong energy cooperation between the two countries, the foreign secretary said.

On the second leg of his visit, Kwatra said Modi will visit Austria on July 9-10 at the invitation of the Chancellor of Austria.

This will be the first visit to Austria by an Indian prime minister, he said, adding the last prime ministerial visit from India to Austria took place more than 40 years ago.

Modi will call on the president of Austria and hold restricted, delegation-level talks, as also a high-level business engagement in Austria, Kwatra added.

Modi will also hold talks with Chancellor of Austria Karl Nehammer, the MEA said on Thursday, adding he will interact with members of the Indian community in Vienna.

Published 05 July 2024, 12:11 IST

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