Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Thursday arrived in Moscow on a three-day visit to Russia during which he will work on further expanding bilateral cooperation and consolidating coordination on regional and global issues. Dr Singh arrived at the Sheremetyevo International Airport and was received by Russia's Deputy Foreign Minister A M Vadakin.
Noting that there is enormous mutual goodwill in the two countries for each other, Dr Singh, prior to his departure, had said in New Delhi that he is "convinced that India-Russia consultation on global issues is more necessary today than ever before".
"Both countries recognise the significant mutual benefit we derive from working together. I will utilise my visit to further expand our bilateral cooperation and further consolidate our coordination on regional and global issues. This is in our national interest and in the interest of global peace and prosperity," the prime minister, who will be attending the 12th annual Indo-Russian Summit in Moscow, said in a statement.
Observing that this year's India-Russia Annual Summit was taking place against the backdrop of a complex international environment, Singh said he was "looking forward to an in depth exchange of views with the Russian leadership on the crisis facing the global economy and the political developments in our extended neighbourhood, including West Asia, Gulf and Afghanistan and the impact of all this on peace and stability in the world.
"The perspectives of our countries on these developments are marked by a high degree of convergence," he said. During the visit, Dr Singh will discuss with Russian President Medvedev ways to further enhance consultations in international forums like the United Nations Security Council, G 20, BRICS as well as the East Asia Summit which Russia has recently joined.
"I am convinced that India-Russia consultation on global issues is more necessary today than ever before. Our bilateral relations with Russia are based on mutual trust, friendship and shared interests," he had said, noting that bilateral ties encompass diverse sectors including nuclear energy, defence, space, science and technology, hydrocarbons, trade and investment and people-to-people exchanges.
The prime minister also said he will "discuss mechanisms to further expand our bilateral cooperation, particularly in the trade, economic and commercial fields."
Dr Singh that he was looking forward to meeting Prime Minister Vladimir Putin during his visit. Observing that Putin has played a key role in development of "our strategic partnership, and has been the architect of our contemporary relationship," Dr Singh said, "I will review with him the progress we have made in our relations since his visit to India in March 2010".