India on Tuesday vowed to expand its economic engagement with “time-tested” partner Russia including procurement of crude oil even as External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar reiterated New Delhi’s call for resolving the Ukraine conflict through dialogue and diplomacy in his wide-ranging talks with Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov in Moscow.
PTI reported that in his opening remarks at the meeting, Jaishankar referred to the “exceptionally steady” Indo-Russia relationship for decades and that the objective is to fashion a contemporary, balanced, mutually beneficial, sustainable and long-term engagement between the two sides.
At a press conference later, the external affairs minister said the talks covered practical cooperation in areas of trade, investments, energy and commodities as well as sensitive domains like defence, space and nuclear energy.
“There have been strong and continuing contacts between our governments at various levels. Our meeting is devoted to assessing our ties; exchanging perspectives on global situation and what it means to our respective interests.
“Where bilateral ties are concerned, our objective is to fashion a contemporary, balanced, mutually beneficial and long-term engagement.
“Covid, trade difficulties have taken a toll on global economy; we are now seeing consequences of Ukraine conflict on top of that.
“There are more perennial issues of terrorism and climate change, both of which have a disruptive impact on progress and prosperity,” Jaishankar said.