External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj today arrived in Russian port city of Vladivostok on a three-day visit to attend the third Eastern Economic Forum which will deliberate on pressing issues relating to global trade. She will also hold bilateral talks with her Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov during which various issues relating to trade, investment and defence cooperation are likely to figure. Swaraj is visiting Russia at the invitation of Deputy Prime Minister and Presidential Plenipotentiary Envoy to the Far Eastern Federal District Yury Trutnev. “The External Affairs Minister’s visit reflects the importance attached by India to emerging opportunities in the Russian Far East, and to its strategic partnership with Russia,” the external affairs ministry had said last week. The Eastern Economic Forum is considered as the biggest international communication platform for cooperation between businesses leaders and senior government representatives from Russia, the Pacific Region and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).
Delegates from at least 24 countries including the US, Japan, China, Australia, Canada, Britain and Germany are attending the gathering, as per Russian media report. Swaraj’s trip to Russia follows the visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi as guest of honour at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum in June.
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Yesterday, Modi had held talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin on the sidelines of the BRICS summit in Chinese city of Xiamen and discussed ways for boosting bilateral trade and investment. They also discussed the security situation in Afghanistan.