Traditionally, the Indo-Russian strategic partnership has been built on major components like politics, defence, civil nuclear energy, anti-terrorism co-operation and space, but then bilateral trade became one the most important component for India-Russia relationship.
Though after collapse of Soviet Union Rao’s response was to discern some broad directions of the transformations taking place. In response to these projections, he sought to radically modify India’s strategic and security priorities. As there was an uncertainty that arrived in the international and domestic levels, Prime Minister N. Rao reoriented New Delhi’s diplomatic priorities by redefining Indian national interests. Therefore normalization of relations with Israel was a calibrated move with three factors taken into consideration.
• Development based on Market reforms
• Encourage better relations with the US
• New foreign policy priorities included ensuring India’s Defence capabilities

“The Declaration on Strategic Partnership between India and Russia signed in October 2000 became a truly historic step” is what President Putin stated in an article written by him in the Hindu in 2000. This is because of the first major political initiative, since the collapse of the Soviet Union, between India and Russia. The Strategic Partnership was signed between the two countries in 2000.

The IRIGC (India-Russia Intergovernmental Commission) is the main body that conducts affairs at the governmental level between both countries. India and Russia both are members of many international bodies where they collaborate closely on matters of shared national interest. Important examples include the UN, BRICS, G20 and SCO. Russia has shown it’s support for India in regards to receiving a permanent seat on the United Nations Security Council and has vocally backed India joining the NSG and APEC. On the other hand, Russia has expressed interest in joining SAARC with observer status, in which India is a founding member.

Recently in the BRICS summit the two leaders noted that the USD 25 billion bilateral trade target by 2025 has already been achieved. They further decided to hold the 1st bilateral regional forum between Russian Provinces and the Indian States in 2020 to do away with the trade barriers at the regional level. They further noted the progress made in oil and natural gas import. Russian President Vladimir Putin highlighted the potential of the Arctic region in natural gas and invited India to invest in the region.

The leaders also reviewed the progress made in the Infrastructure sector especially railways including raising the speed of the Nagpur-Secunderabad sector railway line. The leaders further noted cooperation between India and Russia in Defence sector and Civil Nuclear Energy. They also noted that the two nations share a common position on several international issues and agreed to continue close consultations.

Prime Minister Modi accepted the Russian President’s invitation to participate in Russia’s Victory Day celebrations in 2020.


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