PM Modi to address plenary session of 5th EEF, Holds bilateral talks with his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will address the plenary session of 5th Eastern Economic Forum (EEF) at Vladivostok in Russia today. Mr Modi is attending the EEF as the chief guest at the invitation of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The EEF provides a platform for discussing issues aimed at expanding international cooperation in Asia-Pacific region and developing the economy of Russia’s Far East. There are several sessions involving India at the EEF. Among them are harnessing the power of Youth, Logistics – a digital pathway, Human Capital in Eurasia, and the Russia India business dialogue.

India and Japan have called for a free and open Indo-Pacific region to make it secured and prosperous. The Prime Minister held a bilateral meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Mr Shinzo Abe on the margins of Eastern Economic Forum in Vladivostok this morning. During the meeting, both leaders shared similar views on Indo-pacific region.

Both leaders decided to hold the first 2 plus  2 ministerial meeting of Foreign and Defence minsters of both countries ahead of the annual bilateral summit in New Delhi in December this year. Briefing the newspersons, Foreign Secretary Vijaya Gokhale said both leaders discussed the importance of trilateral relations with  African countries. They also discussed to continue the trilateral meeting of India, Japan and the US for enhancing regional cooperation.

The Prime Minister called on Malaysian Prime Minister Dr Mahathir bin Mohammad and discussed trade matters between the two countries. The Malaysian Prime Minister assured to balance the trade by importing more goods and services from India. The Prime Minister has raised the issue of extradition of Zakir Naik and asserted that the Indian officials will continue to hold deliberations with Malaysia in this regard.

The Foreign Secretary said both leaders expressed strong determination to fight against terrorism of any form. Mr Modi has also called on Mangolian President  Khaltmaagiin Battulga who is scheduled to visit India this month. They discussed about India’s assistance in in the  ongoing oil refinery project in Mangolia. They also discussed about people to people  contact.

Prime Minister arrived in Vladivostok yesterday on a two-day visit to Russia. Mr Modi held comprehensive talks with Mr Putin at the India-Russia 20th Annual Summit in Vladivostok yesterday. Addressing a joint press meet with Mr Putin after their talks, Mr Modi said, the talks were aimed at finding new horizons of India-Russia cooperation. This includes opportunities in trade, security, maritime cooperation and working together to protect the environment, he said.

Mr Modi said, India and Russia are against outside influence in the internal matters of any nation. Russia has backed India’s move on Jammu and Kashmir, saying that the changes in the status are within the framework of the Indian Constitution. Briefing the media later, Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale said Prime Minister Modi explained to President Putin the rationale behind the decision and Russia stands firmly behind India on the issue.

The countries also signed 15 agreements in areas such as defence, air, and maritime connectivity, energy, natural gas, petroleum and trade. A joint statement issued later said that the two leaders decided to take the bilateral trade from the current 11 billion dollars to 30 billion dollars by 2025. Russia will also help train Indian astronauts for the manned space mission – Gaganyaan.

They called for reform of the UN Security Council to reflect contemporary global realities. Russia expressed its support for India’s candidacy for a permanent membership of the UNSC. Russia also expressed its strong support for India’s membership of the Nuclear Suppliers Group. The two leaders strongly condemned terrorism in all its forms and manifestations and called on the international community to set up a united front to fight against this evil.

The Hindu

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