India and Russia will develop a blueprint for strategic partnership for the next decade during Russian President Dmitry Medvedev's visit beginning on Tuesday, Joint Secretary in the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) Vishnu Prakash said here on Sunday.
The summit meeting between Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Mr. Medvedev will mark the completion of a decade of Declaration of Strategic Partnership which has accomplished most of the benchmarks set out in 2000, Joint Secretary (Eurasia) in the MEA Ajay Bisaria told a news briefing.
The officials said a road map for cooperation in hydrocarbons, multi-faceted civil nuclear partnership and co-developing frontline technologies would be the key pillars of the strategic partnership for the coming years.
The two sides will also sign several MoUs besides trying to narrow perceptions over the Civil Nuclear Liability Act and ironing out shortcomings that have hampered trade and investment. India in particular is looking at the $15 billion opportunity in the pharmaceuticals sector that has been hampered by Moscow's insistence on clinical trials.
“Adequate ground work has been done for the visit. The two high level Inter-Governmental Commissions have already met,'' said Mr. Prakash, while noting that the co-architect of the Strategic Partnership and Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin had visited India in March this year. In fact Dr. Singh had separately met Mr. Putin during his visit to Moscow last year and that had helped both countries to forge closer ties in the hydrocarbons sector.
With Mr. Medvedev's arrival, New Delhi would have played host to heads of state/government of all permanent members of the UN Security Council (P-5). But “Russia stands apart and we now prepare to accord a warm welcome to the Russian President who will be on an official visit for the 11th India-Russia summit meeting,'' Mr. Prakash said.
The Russian President will be accompanied by Deputy Prime Minister Sergei Ivanov, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, besides the Ministers for Science & Education and Energy, the Mayor of St. Petersburg, members of the Duma and a large business delegation.
In hydrocarbons India and Russia are working on identifying specific projects. “Russia is looking for an assured buyer and India is looking for an assured supplier. Therefore there are natural synergies. Both see these two as pillars of a long term strategic energy partnership,'' said the officials.