News / Europe

Russia's Putin to India for First Time as PM

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin is heading to India on Thursday for the first time in his capacity as prime minister, instead of president.  Experts say his visit is aimed at strengthening existing military and energy ties between the two countries.

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin arrives Thursday in India for a two-day visit.  

Experts say he hopes to tap into India's growing energy and defense needs, both of which are being fueled by its prospering economy and its desire to modernize its military.

Moscow and New Delhi have enjoyed close ties since the Soviet era and Russia sees India as an important partner whose influence will expand in Asia.

Pavel Felgenhauer is a Russian political and military analyst.

Felgenhauer says Putin's visit is mostly about military aspects.  He says Russia and India also share many similar interests and views.  For example, stability in central Asia.  He says India was a serious ally of the Soviet Union.

Last year, Russia and India agreed to the outlines of a 10-year weapons deal that could be worth at least $10-billion.  They are also building a modern supersonic stealth fighter aircraft.

Again Russian military and political expert Pavel Felgenhauer.

He says that Russia remains India's major supplier of arms and military technology.  Felgenhauer says most analysts are also expecting the final deal on the aircraft carrier Russia has been putting together for many years.

The soviet-era aircraft carrier the Admiral Gorshkov was sold to India, but is being refurbished by Russia.  The Gorshkov sale has been marred by difficulties, including pricing disputes and delayed deliveries, leading many analysts to wonder whether India could be tempted to reduce its dependence on Russian military equipment by doing more trade with the United States.

The director general of the New Delhi-based Institute for Defense Studies and Analyses, Narendra Sing Sisodia, says Russia will remain a reliable trading partner for India.

"We still have very strong cooperation in the nuclear field with the Russians.  We are also getting submarines and aircraft carriers from them," Sisodia said.  "So it is a signal that the Russians are completely committed to this ongoing relationship.  I think Russia is very critical in the context of the fact that we are surrounded by other neighbors who may not be exactly that friendly.  So this kind of a relationship with the Russians is, I think, strategically very important," said Sisodia.

Leaders of both countries are also expected to establish a strategy on Afghanistan, critical to their own security.

Jawaharlal Nehru University Professor Anuradha Chenoy says the talks will focus on the situation in Afghanistan, but will also extend to global issues including climate change.

"Major issues in the international security system today are the economic crisis, the financial crisis, the climate crisis and the security crisis and in all these the position India takes, very often, they can coordinate very well with Russia and I think there will be talks about all these issues with Russia," said Chenoy.

Both countries are also expected to try and boost bilateral trade as neither has made a significant presence in the other's markets.  India's state-run energy company, ONGC, has been trying to augment its position in Russia, which is the world's largest energy producer.

Jawaharal Nehru University post-graduate student Isha Dubey says maintaining ties with Russia is important for her country.

"I think Russia has always been favorable towards the Indian scene, in Pakistan or she has always favored us, helped us through the defense department.  So it is pretty important that we keep the strategic ties friendly and amicable," said Dubey.

During his trip to Russia last year, Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh claimed other countries would never sacrifice India's relationship with the Kremlin.

Russia and India, together with Brazil and China, are part of the so-called BRIC grouping of major developing economies trying to promote a multi-polar world not dominated by the United States.

You May Like

Disappointing Report on China's Economy Shakes Markets

In London and New York shares lost 3 percent, while Paris and Germany dropped around 2.4 percent More

DRC Tries Mega-Farms to Feed Population

Park at Boukanga Lonzo currently has 5,000 hectares under cultivation, crops stretching as far as eye can see, and is start of ambitious large-scale agriculture plan More

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Areas are spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, source of livelihood for fishermen and herders who have called the marshes home for generations More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOAi
X
August 31, 2015 2:17 AM
Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOA

Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Iraq's southern wetlands are in crisis. These areas are the spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, and source of livelihood for fishermen and herders. Faith Lapidus has more.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Rebuilding New Orleans' Music Scene

Ten years after Hurricane Katrina inundated New Orleans, threatening to wash away its vibrant musical heritage along with its neighborhoods, the beat goes on. As Bronwyn Benito and Faith Lapidus report, a Musicians' Village is preserving the city's unique sound.
Video

Video In Russia, Auto Industry in Tailspin

Industry insiders say country relies too heavily on imports as inflation cuts too many consumers out of the market. Daniel Schearf has more from Moscow.
Video

Video Scientist Calls Use of Fetal Tissue in Medical Research Essential

An anti-abortion group responsible for secret recordings of workers at a women's health care organization claims the workers shown are offering baby parts for sale, a charge the organization strongly denies. While the selling of fetal tissue is against the law in the United States, abortion and the use of donated fetal tissue for medical research are both legal. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.

VOA Blogs