Friday, March 12, 2010

Putin arrives in India

India has a long history of defense ties with Moscow.The current cooperation program comprises about 200 joint projects, including the transfer of technology for the licensed assembly of T-90 tanks in India, the production of BrahMos missiles and the purchase of Smerch MLRS by India.India and Russia are to sign deals worth over USD 10 billion,during the visit of Prime Inister of Russia Vladimir Putin which includes sectors defence and civilian nuclear sectors, plus conclude the long-delayed agreement on aircraft carrier Admiral Gorshkov.

"We expect the signing of 14-15 agreements after the talks and contracts worth over USD 10 billion," Putin's foreign policy aide Yuri Ushakov told reporters in Moscow.
During the talks in New Delhi, special focus would be laid on bilateral interaction in hi-tech sectors like civilian nuclear energy, defence industry and production of telecom equipment, he said.

Russian media reports that around 15 documents worth over $10 billion are expected to be signed during the Russian prime minister's visit to India, a government spokesman said on Wednesday.Vladimir Putin is to visit Delhi on Friday."There is a list of 17 documents. Some of them are being finalized, but I think that 14-15 documents will be signed," said Yury Ushakov, deputy government chief of staff.He said the following documents would be signed: a nuclear cooperation agreement, including a memorandum of understanding on the construction of new power units at the Kudankulam nuclear power plant in southern India, and an additional contract for the upgrade and retrofitting of the Admiral Gorshkov (INS Vikramaditya) aircraft carrier.
Military contracts will include a deal on delivery of MiG-29K/KUB carrier-based fighters.Further agreements will include a fifth generation fighter aircraft project and work on a multi-role transport aircraft.
Additional agreement on retrofitting of Admiral Gorshkov aircraft carrier, the contract for supply of additional 29 naval MiG29K fighters and a deal to jointly develop a transport aircraft are among those to be signed during Putin's visit, he said.According to the delivery agreement for Admiral Gorshkov, an irritant in the bilateral ties, New Delhi would shell out an additional USD 2.35 billion for the up-gradation of the carrier and training of Indian naval crews."Besides the two countries are also expected to sign the agreement for the construction of two more nuclear reactors at Kudankulam NPP in addition to two already in the completion stage," Ushakov said.Report RIA Novost

Putin,last visited India as Russian President in 2007, would begin the official part of his visit on Friday by calling on President Pratibha Patil and Congress President Sonia Gandhi, the official said.He is also slated to hold a video conference with the Indian business leaders and cultural activists, including active listeners of the Voice of Russia radio's Indian broadcasts, who will gather in Mumbai, Kolkata and Bangalore.The main talks with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, who had visited Russia in December last year, would be held in the later half of Friday, Ushakov said.

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