Modi, Putin to sign 25 pacts at upcoming India-Russia annual summit

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who arrived in Russia's Far Eastern city of Vladivostok earlier today, gave a joint statement at the 20th Annual Summit between the two countries, along with Russian President Vladimir Putin by side. In April 2018, when Modi visited Sochi for the informal summit, Putin, in a rare gesture, accompanied the PM to the airport before his departure.

PM Modi, in his address, expressed his happiness over his visit to Vladivostok while thanking the Russian President for the invite.

"I look forward to discussing with my friend President Putin the entire gamut of our bilateral partnership as well as regional and global issues of mutual interest", he said in his departure statement in New Delhi. He said the possibility of oil and gas supply from the Arctic will also be explored during the prime minister's visit.

"With the signing of the road map for cooperation in hydrocarbons for 2019-24 during the summit, both sides expect bilateral cooperation in this sector to touch new heights in the next five years", according to a joint statement by the two countries.

"Russia is an integral friend and trustworthy partner of India".

Meanwhile, Putin, on his part, said that both countries share similar perspectives on certain aspects of worldwide issues.

Russia, PM Modi announced, will help train astronauts for the India's first manned space mission: Gaganyaan.

He added, " As two integral friends, wé've met regularly. "I have also spoken to you on the phone many times, and I never feel any doubt during these conversations", Modi said.

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He said India and Russian Federation enjoy excellent relations, based on the strong foundation of special strategic partnership and also have robust and growing trade and investment opportunities. I express my gratitude to you and the people of Russian Federation. "It's a matter of honour for the 1.3 billion Indians".

The energy pact was one of 15 signed in areas ranging from cooperation in the production of spare parts for Russian or Soviet-origin Indian military equipment to infrastructure finance, besides energy cooperation, after talks between Modi and Russian President Vladimir Putin in Vladivostok.

PM Modi, who is on a two-day visit to Russian Federation, will attend the annual Eastern Economic Forum (EEF) as the chief guest and hold some bilateral meetings on Thursday.

The forum focuses on development of business and investment opportunities in the Russian Far East Region, and presents enormous potential for developing close and mutually beneficial cooperation between India and Russia in the region.

"Strong winds propelling the India-Russia relationship!"

Modi and Putin will start the summit with a visit to Zvezda, a major shipbuilding facility servicing both the navy and the off-shore oil industry.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was also to visit Vladivostok, along with Mongolian President Khaltmaa Battulga and Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad.

At the shipyard, Modi interacted with the management and workers of the plant.

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