India-Russia relationship, buying oil from Russia: What EAM S Jaishankar said in Moscow
S Jaishankar, on a two-day visit to Russia, said in his opening remarks in a meeting with Sergey Viktorovich Lavrov that “there have been strong and continuing contacts between our governments at various levels“.
Responding to a question on imports of Russian oil, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar Tuesday stated that buying oil from Moscow works to India’s advantage and asserted that he would “like to keep that going”.
He added, “And in that respect quite honestly, the India-Russia relationship has worked to our advantage. So, if it works to my advantage, I’d like to keep that going.”
India’s procurement of discounted Russian crude oil has seen a massive increase in the last few months, despite rising disquiet in many Western capitals.
S Jaishankar said that bilateral talks with his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov will address the overall global situation as well as specific regional concerns.
Jaishankar said, “First of all, there’s stress on the energy market. This is a stress that has been created by a combination of factors, but as the world’s third-largest consumer of oil and gas — a consumer without a high level of income — our fundamental obligation is to ensure that Indian consumers have the best access to the most advantageous terms in the international markets.”
Describing India’s relationship with Russia as “exceptionally” steady, Jaishankar underlined that the objective now is to stitch a mutually beneficial and long-term engagement in the backdrop of the increasing economic cooperation.
S Jaishankar also pointed out that the COVID-19 pandemic, financial pressures, and trade difficulties had taken a toll on the global economy.
“There are more perennial issues of terrorism and climate change, both of which have a disruptive impact on progress and prosperity,” he noted.
This is the 5th meeting between both leaders after the Ukraine conflict began in February. Both leaders spoke on a wide range of issues pertaining to bilateral, regional, and global matters. Jaishankar arrived in Russian Moscow on Monday evening. Prior to this, Jaishankar had last visited Russia in July 2021 followed by a visit to Lavrov to New Delhi in April this year.
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