22 April 2018
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India and Russia: new prospects for strategic partnership in the 21st century

An article by Vladimir Putin published in The Hindu (24.12.2012)

I am glad to have an opportunity to address the readers of one of the most influential Indian newspapers – The Hindu. As my visit to New Delhi is beginning, I would like to outline approaches to further development of strategic partnership between India and Russia.

This year marked the 65th anniversary of diplomatic relations between our countries. During the past decades we have acquired a vast experience of joint work and achieved progress in a range of fields. Political epochs were changing but the principles of bilateral ties, such as mutual confidence and equality, remained the same. I would like to stress that deepening of friendship and cooperation with India is among the top priorities of our foreign policy. And now we have every reason to say that they have really unique special and privileged character.

The Declaration on Strategic Partnership between India and Russia signed in October 2000 became a truly historic step. The developments in the first decade of the 21st century confirmed that it was a particularly significant and timely step. In fact, today we, the whole civilization, face serious challenges. These are unbalanced global development, economic and social instability, lack of confidence and security.

In that situation India and Russia show an example of responsible leadership and collective actions in the international arena.

We have a common goal – to make the world we live in more just, democratic and secure and to facilitate resolving global and regional problems, including the situation in the Middle East and North Africa, and in Afghanistan.

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. The same constructive approach is also reflected in our interaction in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization and other multilateral formats. We expect a meaningful dialogue with Indian side within the framework of Russia’s presidency in the G20 that has begun.

Joint steps in the international arena, participation in the development of rules of global trade and enhancing business, scientific and technological and humanitarian ties form the basis for achieving a new quality of partnership.

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.

To this end, we should engage all reserves and maintain direct contacts between business communities and promote establishing efficient investment, technological and industry alliances in the most dynamic and promising fields. For instance, in energy industry, primarily nuclear one.

The construction of the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant with the use of the most reliable and up-to-date technologies and standards became a major breakthrough project in that field. The beginning of operation of the first power unit of that plant will allow to significantly reduce the energy deficiency in southern states of India, and eventually eliminate it completely, after the launch of the second and other power units. We expect that the implementation of our arrangements on the construction of new NPPs in India will begin in the nearest future.

We hope for significant returns from long-term projects in steel industry, hydrocarbon production, car and aircraft manufacturing, chemical and pharmaceuticals industries, in the field of information and biotechnologies. Important benchmarks are set in the Integrated Long-Term Program of Cooperation in the sphere of science, technology and innovation until 2020. Its main task is to ensure that our scientists conduct fundamental and applied research in order to create new technologies, equipment and materials.

The joint operation of Russian global navigation satellite system GLONASS opens up broad prospects. The package of respective bilateral agreements has already been signed. We intend to promote practical interaction in that important area.

The strategic nature of partnership between India and Russia is witnessed by the unprecedented level of our military and technical cooperation. The licensed production and joint development of advanced armaments rather than just purchasing military products becomes a key area of activities.

Serious attention is paid to developing a fifth generation multifunctional fighter plane and a multipurpose transport aircraft. The product of our designers, the "BrahMos" cruise missile, has successfully passed all tests. Today experts are thinking on its aircraft version.

I am confident that such a multivector cooperation will allow our countries not only to reach leading positions as a range of hi-technology projects are concerned, but will help to successfully advance joint products to markets of third countries.

Humanitarian cooperation has a particular significance for India and Russia, which are States with great cultural heritage and potential. The centuries-old history and culture of India, majestic architectural monuments and museums of Delhi, Agra and Mumbai have a unique attractive force. In its turn, Indian citizens with interest discover the wealth of Russian music, literature and art. The Festival of Russian Culture in India and All-Russian Festival of Modern Cinema and Culture of India which were successfully held this year have convincingly proved it once again.

I am confident that awareness-raising and educational projects should be more actively promoted and tourism and youth exchanges developed. In fact, they enrich our citizens and add new contents to human dimension of bilateral relations which becomes all the more significant and relevant today.

The India-Russia summit in New Delhi was preceded by painstaking and comprehensive preparations. We have a clear vision of major vectors of future-oriented joint work. I am confident that summit talks will be constructive, as they always were, and their outcome will give a powerful impetus to strategic partnership for the benefit of our two countries and peoples, in the interests of peace and stability in Eurasia and on our common planet.

I will take the liberty to outline joint prospects for strategic partnership between India and Russia in the 21st century. These are deepening of cooperation in knowledge-intensive fields based on strong historic traditions, advancement of joint products to international markets, further increasing of the share of high value added products in the trade turnover, enhancing the role and effectiveness of Indian-Russian interaction in international affairs, and the widest possible realization of the potential of cultural and humanitarian contacts.

I sincerely wish to the people of friendly India peace, well-being and new impressive achievements.


21.04.2018 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's talking points at the Press Conference, 20 April 2018

Since we met last time a lot of events took place: - Military strikes of the United States, UK and France against Syria in violation of the international law - Mission by OPCW inspectors to Douma - Speech of Prime Minister May in Parliament in support of the British aggression against Syria - Special meeting of the OPCW Executive Council (18 April 2018) - New developments in the classified case of Salisbury poisoning of Skripal family - No meaningful developments on the Glushkov case - and Cyber security threats I plan to comment all these issues. And I will be happy to answer all our questions, if you have any.

17.03.2018 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's interview for "Mail on Sunday" (full text)

Q: Bearing in mind that the US, France and Germany have said they agree with Britain that all the evidence suggests the attacks in Salisbury were the responsibility of the Russian state, what credibility can be placed on the denials issued by the Russian Government? A:We don't know if UK presented any evidence to US, France and Germany - highly likely none - but if they did, why not present it through the channels outlined in the Chemical Weapons Convention? Universal legal principle is presumption of innocence, and the burden of proof lies with the British Government. Its record includes the Iraq WMD dossier - you will remember that at some point doubting US and UK claims was considered a wild conspiracy theory. It is not any more.

26.01.2018 - Main foreign policy outcomes of 2017

In 2017, Russian diplomacy addressed multidimensional tasks to ensure national security and create a favourable external environment for our country's progressive development. Russia maintained an independent foreign policy, promoted a unifying agenda, and proposed constructive solutions to international problems and conflicts. It developed mutually beneficial relations with all interested states, and played an active role in the work of the UN, multilateral organisations and forums, including the G20, BRICS, the SCO, the OSCE, and the CSTO. Among other things, Russian policy has sought to prevent the destabilisation of international relations, and this responsible policy has met with broad understanding in the international community.

17.01.2018 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at the unveiling of memorial plaque in Sayes Court Park

Dear Mayor, Dear Councillors, Lady Joan, Ladies and gentlemen, It is now 320 years ago that a truly remarkable man set foot in Deptford. As you know, the Russian Tsar Peter, later named the Great, visited Western Europe in 1697—1698 under the nickname of Peter Mikhailov, with his Grand Embassy. He was eager to find out about the latest achievements in science and technology and create new diplomatic alliances. Of course, England couldn’t escape his attention. He mostly studied shipbuilding at the famous Deptford Dockyard, but he also met King William III, and, reportedly, Isaac Newton. Peter’s landlord, the famous John Evelyn, was also a respected scientist – a founder member of the Royal Society.

13.12.2017 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at the Presentation of the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia by Russia 2018 Local Organising Committee.

Ladies and gentlemen, dear friends, I am pleased to welcome you to the Russian Embassy at the Presentation of the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia by Russia 2018 Local Organising Committee. It’s a common knowledge, that football is the most popular game in the world. It is an honour for us to host the 2018 FIFA World Cup for the first time in the history of our country. I believe that those who come to Russia to support their national teams will leave with unforgettable memories.

08.12.2017 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at the Roscosmos "Sputnik" exhibition launch at Rossotrudnichestvo

Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at the Roscosmos "Sputnik" exhibition launch at Rossotrudnichestvo (7 December 2017)

25.11.2017 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at the reception at the Embassy dedicated to Russian Film Week (24 November 2017)

Ladies and gentlemen, Dear friends First of all, I would like to pay tribute to the outstanding Russian opera singer Dmitri Hvorostovsky who passed away this week. In 2015 he gave a concert in this very hall. I am delighted to welcome you at our reception dedicated to the Russian Film Week and the environmental causes it champions. This year their charity partner is World Wide Fund for Nature, which runs many projects in Russia in coordination and with support of the Russian Government. Russia has a unique, fascinating wildlife. A number of this week’s films show the natural beauty of our land and are sure to raise awareness of how fragile this beauty is. We appreciate the WWF effort in Russia and worldwide and call on everybody to become a supporter, especially this year, marked as Year of Ecology in Russia.

20.11.2017 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at the launch of the Russian Film Week (19 November 2017)

Ladies and gentlemen, It is a pleasure for me to be at the opening of the second edition of the Russian Film Week here in London – which this year also spans to Cambridge and Edinburgh.

16.10.2017 - Unpublished letter to the Editor of The Times (sent 12 October)

Sir, If British MPs are free to speak out, wherever they wish, on any issue, why try to block their freedom of speech (“Helping Putin”, 11 October)? If a TV channel wants (and is legally bound) to present different points of view, why slam those who express these views? If the mere act of giving an interview to foreign media amounts to high treason, why does The Times interview Russian politicians without fear? And finally - while MPs critical of Russia are welcome guests on the Russian TV channel RT, does your paper give the same treatment to those critical of the paper’s owner? Konstantin Shlykov Press Secretary of the Embassy of the Russian Federation

25.09.2017 - PRESENTATION by Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk at the Christian Future of Europe Conference 22 September 2017, London

Your Eminences and Your Excellencies, dear Mr. Ambassador, conference organizers and participants, I cordially greet all of those gathered today at the Russian Embassy in London to partake in this conference dedicated to the question of the future of Christianity in Europe. This topic is not only not losing any of its relevance, but is resounding ever anew. Experts believe that today Christianity remains not only the most persecuted religious community on the planet, but is also encountering fresh challenges which touch upon the moral foundations of peoples' lives, their faith and their values. Recent decades have seen a transformation in the religious and ethnic landscape of Europe.

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