India, Russia Sign 16 Major Deals

India, Russia Sign 16 Major DealsIndia, Russia Sign 16 Major Deals

Russia will supply India with 10 million tons of oil per year in the next 10 years, President Vladimir Putin said after meeting Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Moscow after two days of extensive talks that led to signing 16 major deals, including in trade, defense and nuclear energy.

“In the framework of the agreement between Rosneft and Esser group, large-scale supplies of oil and petroleum products–10 million tons of oil annually in the next 10 years–are planned to be delivered to Indian refineries,” Putin said in a joint statement, RT reported.

Moscow also reiterated its commitment to cooperate in the nuclear sphere, as Putin confirmed Russia’s plans to build at least six new nuclear power units in India in the next 20 years.

In April 2014, Russia and India agreed to begin Phase II of the Kudankulam Plant, which is to be launched in the next few weeks. The construction of blocks 3 and 4 is to begin shortly, with negotiations underway on the 5th and 6th blocks.

 “It’s not just about the final product, but about close technological cooperation,” Putin explained.

The two countries also pledged to expand collaboration in space exploration as well as rocket and engine manufacture, but there was no progress on the purchase of Russia’s S-400 missiles by India.

In a separate statement, Putin warned that Russia should be prepared for durable financial challenges presented by a long period of low oil prices.

Lower crude oil prices are creating fiscal problems for economies like Russia that depend heavily on energy exports for revenue.

“I would like to repeat that we should be ready for a possible extension of the period of low prices for our main exports and, possibly, of external limitations,” he said.

Russian finance planners said the 2016 budget was based on oil priced at around $50 per barrel. With crude oil trading below $40 per barrel, Russian Economic Development Minister Alexei Ulyakayev said “we will have to make further adjustments”.

Putin said there have been steady signs of economic stabilization. From September to October, GDP grew by about 0.3%, compared with about 0.1% from the previous one-month period.