India offers $1 bn for Russia’s Far East
   Date :06-Sep-2019
INDIA on Thursday announced an “unprecedented” USD 1 billion line of credit for the development of Russia’s Far East with Prime Minister Narendra Modi vowing that New Delhi will walk shoulder-to-shoulder with Moscow in its quest for the development of the resource-rich region. Addressing the plenary session of the 5th Eastern Economic Forum (EEF) here, Prime Minister Modi said that it was a “unique case” of India providing such special credit line to another country. “For the development of the Far East, India will give line of credit worth USD 1 billion. My Government has actively engaged East Asia as part of its ‘Act East’ policy,” Modi said at a packed house here. “I am confident that this step will give new impetus to the development of economic diplomacy and growth of ties between the regions of our friendly states.
We will remain active partners in our priority cooperation,” he said. Terming it an “unprecedented case”, the Prime Minister said that this is “our launching pad” in the Far East where India is “very active”. Modi said, the friendship between India and Russia was not restricted to governmental interactions in capital cities, but was about people and close business relations. “India’s connection to Russia’s Far East go back a long way. India was the first country to open a Consulate in Vladivostok,” he said. The Prime Minister, in the presence of Russian President Vladimir Putin, also unveiled the “Act Far East” policy to boost India’s engagement with Russia’s Far East region.
“Let us deepen the bond between India and Russia even further. India is proud of the achievements of the Indian diaspora. I am sure here in the Russian Far East too the Indian diaspora will make an active contribution towards the region’s progress,” Modi said. “India is proud to be an active participant in Eastern Economic Forum. High level delegations from India have come to this prestigious Forum. We look forward to stronger India-Russia cooperation in areas like healthcare, education, skill development and more sectors,” he said. Russia’s Far East deepens the bond between Russia and Asia, Modi said. “This is a region known for courageous and talented people.
India looks forward to boosting cooperation with Russia’s Far East,” he said. India concluded around 50 agreements worth USD 5 billion at the EEF-2019, according to the Prime Minister. “We concluded 50 agreements worth USD 5 billion at this forum,” Modi was quoted as saying by the Russian news agency TASS. Indian firms have invested over USD 7 billion in taking stake in Russian oil and gas fields. India ventured into Russia when its flagship overseas firm ONGC Videsh in 2001 acquired a 20 per cent stake in Sakhalin-1 oil and gas field in Far East Russia.
OVL later bought Imperial Energy, which has fields in Siberia, as also stakes in Vankor oilfield in eastern Siberia. Indian Oil Corporation and its partners have picked up 29.9 per cent stake in a separate Taas-Yuryakh oilfield in East Siberia. Russian oil firm Rosneft in 2017 bought Essar Oil, which operates in Vadinar oil refinery in Gujarat and some 5,500 petrol pumps, for USD 12.9 billion. Modi appreciated the vision of Putin for the welfare for Russia’s Far East, saying the President has opened up investment opportunities for India in the region. Modi visits India Business Pavilion at EEF in Vladivostok: PRIME Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday visited the India Business Pavilion here and launched an Indo-Russian online platform, to bridge the gap between Indian and Russian startup ecosystems. Modi visited the pavilion, called ‘India Lounge’ on the sidelines of the fifth meeting of the Eastern Economic Forum here in the Russian Far East Region.
“PM @narendramodi visited the India Business Pavilion at #EEF. Launched the Indo-Russian Innovation Bridge, an online platform to bridge the gap between Indian & Russian startup ecosystems to enable meaningful synergies to promote joint innovation in both economies,” External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said in a tweet. “PM @narendramodi also launched Startup India–Kalyani EdTech Challenge where @investindia & Kalyani Group joined hands to support top Indian & Russian startups. The Challenge is open to all startups & innovators & will be hosted on Startup India website,” Kumar tweeted.
The pavilion is with the support of the ‘Roscongress Foundation’ at the forum. The lounge will serve as a platform to demonstrate investment opportunities in the Far East, promote Indian investments in the region, and attract Russian investors to the growing economy of India, according to a statement on the forum’s website. PM Modi says linguistic connection exists between India, Russia: PRIME Minister on Thursday said that India and Russia share a linguistic connection in bidding farewell. Addressing the plenary session of the 5th EEF here, Modi said in his home State Gujarat instead of saying ‘Goodbye’ people say ‘Aavjo’ (see you later). And here in Russia, people say ‘Do svidaniya’ which means until the next meeting.
India, Russia should take inspiration from Gandhi-Tolstoy friendship: Modi
PRIME Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday said that Russian writer-philosopher Leo Tolstoy and Mahatma Gandhi had a “indelible effect” on each other and urged the two nations to take inspiration from them to further strengthen the bilateral ties. Speaking at the plenary session of the 5th Eastern Economic Forum here, Modi said that India and Russia should be a bigger stakeholder in each other’s development.
“This year entire world is observing Mahatma Gandhi’s 150th birth anniversary. Tolstoy and Gandhi had a indelible effect on each other. Let India and Russia make their ties more significant by taking inspiration from it. Let both the nations become a bigger stakeholder in each other’s development,” Modi said. He said India and Russia should jointly work towards its shared region and also for a stable and secure future of the world.
Gandhi was profoundly inspired and influenced by Russian writer-philosopher Tolstoy. Though they never met personally in their life-time, both shared an unique bond and exchanged ideas through letters. In his autobiography, Gandhi has written how Tolstoy’s book, ‘The Kingdom of God is Within You’, which he read on October 1, 1904, during a train journey from Johannesburg to Durban in South Africa, changed his life.