Moscow: Russian President Vladimir Putin, who skipped G20 Summit due to a military operation, praised Prime Minister Narendra Modi and said he was doing the right thing in promoting the Make in India programme.
Putin made the remarks while speaking at the 8th Eastern Economic Forum (EEF) in response to a media query on Russian-made cars. He said India has set an example through its policies that domestically made automobiles must be used.
In an address at the forum, Putin said, “You know, we did not have domestically made cars then, but we do now. It is true that they look more modest than Mercedes or Audi cars, which we bought in vast amounts in the 1990s, but this is not an issue. I think that we should emulate many of our partners, for example, India. They are focused on the manufacture and use of Indian-made vehicles. I think that Prime Minister Modi is doing the right thing in promoting the Make in India programme. He is right.”
He said it is absolutely fine to use Russian-made automobiles.
“We have [Russian-made] automobiles, and we must use them; this is absolutely fine. This will not lead to any infringements of our WTO obligations, absolutely not. It will concern state purchases. We must create a certain chain regarding what cars different classes of officials can drive, so that they will use domestically-made cars,” Putin said in Vladivostok, according to a transcript of the plenary session posted on Kremlin’s website.
“You probably know about the proposals to continue buying these cars. It would be easy to do, because the logistics are streamlined,” he added.
Further, he spoke about the benefit of the India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor (IMEC) for Russia.
The United States jumped into the “last car” by agreeing with the European Union, Saudi Arabia and India on the creation of a new economic corridor but the project itself is for the benefit of Russia, Putin said while speaking at the EEF as cited by the Russian news agency TASS.
Speaking at the forum, Putin said, “I believe that this will only benefit us. I believe that this will only help us develop logistics. Firstly, this project has been discussed for a long time, for several years.”
“True, the Americans jumped on this train at the last moment. But for them, I don’t see much point in being in this project. Only, perhaps, from the point of view of business interest. Meanwhile, the additional movement of goods along this corridor is, in fact, an addition to our North-South project. We have nothing here we see something that could somehow hinder us,” he added.
(With inputs from ANI)