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Putin was addressing eighteen ambassadors to the Russian Federation after receiving their letters of credence this week.
He hailed Indo-Russian ties calling New Delhi as its “truly strategic partner” while welcoming the new Indian ambassador to Russia, P.S. Raghavan.
“Cooperation with India – our truly strategic partner – is a priority of Russia’s foreign policy. We maintain a dynamic and constructive dialogue based on coinciding long-term interests, mutual sympathy and sincere trust,” Putin told the gathering at the Kremlin.
“Negotiations in Moscow with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh have resulted in the signing of joint programmes in science, biotechnology and innovation. We have set specific plans to further develop our defence cooperation,” he added.
Singh had said in a visit to Moscow last year that “Russia stood by India when friends were few”.
India and Russia share traditionally close ties marked by deepening cooperation in defence and space collaborations. India is also one of the top buyers of Russian weapons.
Putin also praised relations with Russia’s South American trading partner, as Moscow and Brasilia lay the groundwork for more intensive future cooperation.
“We are actively cooperating within the G20 and BRICS and hold similar views on numerous issues on the current international agenda,” Putin told the new Brazilian ambassador Antonio Jose Vallim Guerreiro.
“We have established a beneficial and confidential dialogue with President Dilma Rousseff and the Government of Brazil,” said Putin adding Russia and Brazil will work to broaden investment opportunities in sectors as diverse as industry, infrastructure, energy and aerospace.
Brazil is in the final stages of signing a $1 billion anti-aircraft missile batteries deal with Russia.
Brazilian Defence Minister Celso Amorim said last October that defence cooperation between the two BRICS members could “counterbalance” other options, in a reference to Brazil’s traditional arms suppliers such as the United States.
A Brazilian Defence Ministry statement also said Brazil would like to partner with Russia in cyber-defence as the nation is boosting up internet security after reports of massive electronic surveillance by the US and its allies surfaced recently.