The participants discussed the efforts the governments of India and Russia are taking to overcome transport and logistics problems, prospects of setting up a joint banking and financial structure to support the bilateral trade potential, and high-priority areas of cooperation between India and Russia.
"Last year was the 75th year since the establishment of Russian-Indian diplomatic relations. Today, they have the status of a privileged strategic partnership. This is confirmed by the strong friendship between the leaders of the two states, between our countries and peoples," said Ksenia Komissarova, editor-in-chief of the TV BRICS Media Network
"I can say that we always get very good and interesting content from them which we adapt to Russian viewers. We also make our own contribution to the development of bilateral relations," she added.
The first speaker was Ved Prakash Singh, First Secretary and Head of Economic and Commercial Department of the Embassy of India in Moscow. He said that the Russian and Indian leaders in 2021 had decided to reach a bilateral trade volume of US$30 billion by 2025, but that there was potential to increase this figure.
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"This year, we have an opportunity to surpass that figure. In 2023, our goal is to reach a bilateral trade volume of US$50 billion. This is historically high and a huge achievement," he said.
Ved Prakash Singh also pointed out that the two countries have the potential to develop in sectors like pharmaceuticals, chemicals and agriculture. Thus, it is possible to increase exports from India to Russia.
"Trade and economic cooperation between India and Russia has been growing at a rapid pace in recent years... The two countries are striving to strengthen partnerships in the energy sector, trade. A large number of agreements and contracts between the parties have been signed in recent years, laying the foundation for further deepening of our relations," said Sammy Kotwani, president of the Indian Business Alliance (IBA).
He noted that India has a favourable business environment, "As an association (IBA), we provide a certain set of measures to support entrepreneurs. We provide assistance in company registration, allow entrepreneurs to get various permits and licences to do business in the country."
Pavel Kalmychek, director of the bilateral cooperation development department of the Russian Ministry of Economic Development, highlighted the main tool that will solve a lot of structural and systemic problems in the cooperation between the countries in the economy.
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"This tool is a free trade agreement... We signal this to our Indian partners. We work very closely on the platform of the Eurasian Economic Commission (EEC) and we understand that this is the number one task in order to come to some mutually acceptable solutions," he stressed.
The speaker also spoke about the potential of the two countries in the tourism sector. "We understand that our country can offer a huge number of tourist locations. And I am sure that St. Petersburg will be popular with the citizens of India. And here too, we are ready to offer system mechanisms and tools in terms of visa facilitation", said Pavel Kalmychek.
The SPIEF is a unique event in the world of economy and business. Over the years, the forum has become the world's leading meeting place for representatives of the business community and the discussion of key economic issues facing Russia, emerging markets and the world as a whole. The SPIEF 2023 will last until June 17.