Aiming to expand its cooperative ties with Russia, India is all set to invest in the energy sector of Russia. On Tuesday, India opened a first-of-its-kind ‘Energy Office’ in Russia to invest strategically in the oil and gas projects in the three regions of Russian Far East – Yakutia, Sakhalin Oblast, and Priamurye.
The new office was inaugurated on the 45th floor of the Federation Tower. The ‘Energy Office’ would cover top Indian entities- The IEO will cover five top Indian entities — Oil India Limited, ONGC Limited Videsh Limited, GAIL (India) Limited, Indian Oil Corporation Limited, and Engineers India Limited. This initiative would be a great opportunity for both countries to explore more possibilities for India-Russia energy cooperation.
Attendees at the event included Tarun Kapoor, Secretary, Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas, Povel Sorokin, Deputy Minister of Energy of Russia, D B Venkatesh Varma, Ambassador of India to Russia. Moscow and New Delhi have embarked on a new corporation avenue, this time exploring the energy sector.
Russia is the biggest arms supplier of India. Indian defence armoury has many Russian made weapons which are still serving in the Indian military. Being the biggest market for Russian weapons, Moscow keeps New Delhi at the top of its priority list. In 2019, Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited Russia and reiterated the importance of strong and unconstrained ties between the two countries. India also extended $1 billion to Russia for the development of the Russian Far East.
Such ties would have their strategic benefits. Russia, being a heavyweight in the OPEC-Plus grouping and one of the biggest gas producers in the world would surely provide many investment opportunities to Indian companies.
Tarun Kapoor, Secretary, Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas said, “We already have a big collaboration with the Russian federation. Big investments have been made by Indian companies in Russia, and big investments have been made by Russian companies in India. Bilateral trade has also grown”.
Indian Ambassador to Russia, D B Venkatesh Varma said, “Energy vertical is now one of the most promising pillars of our special and privileged strategic partnership between India and Russia. India stands firmly with Russia in promoting its energy security and this is a strong message we want to give, including via the opening of this office”.
New Delhi has already cracked a big defence deal with Moscow regarding S-400 Triumf self-propelled surface-to-air (SAM) systems for $5.5 billion. This deal placed India in the good books of Russia, right above the Chinese regime.
China has been eyeing the Russia’s Far East region. Such is the level of Chinese belligerence that the Communist country is now claiming Vladivostok as its own territory. China is also trying to expand its influence in the Arctic, which has not gone down well Russia.
TFI reported a great deal about India’s investment in the seaports between Chennai and Vladivostok and India’s interest in the Arctic Region of Russia. TFI also anticipated that India would counter the effect of China’s influence in Far East Russia. It’s crystal clear that India is not only targeting China’s interests in the country region but all over the world.