The Ukraine crisis and the Covid-19 pandemic have had a "major impact" on global supply chains and India supports all peaceful efforts to end the Ukraine conflict, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Wednesday.
In a virtual address to a gathering at the plenary session of the Eastern Economic Forum in Vladivostok that included Russian President Vladimir Putin, Modi said the ongoing shortages of food grains, fertilisers and fuel are a "great concern" for developing countries.
Since the start of the Ukraine conflict, Modi has consistently called for an end to hostilities and a return to dialogue and diplomacy to find a resolution. He has also suggested there should be direct talks between the Russian and Ukrainian presidents.
"The Ukraine conflict and the Covid pandemic have had a major impact on global supply chains. Food grains, fertilisers and fuel shortages are of great concern to developing countries," he said, speaking in Hindi.
"From the very beginning of the Ukraine conflict, we have emphasised the need to adopt the path of diplomacy and dialogue," he said.
"We support all peaceful efforts to end this conflict. In this regard, we also welcome the recent consensus on the safe export of cereals and fertilisers," he added, referring to the UN-brokered deal to resume exports of Ukrainian grain.
Modi said India's ancient principle of "Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam" has "taught us to see the world as one family". He added, "In today's globalised world, events in one part of the world create an impact on the whole world."
Turning to bilateral cooperation in Russia's Far East, Modi recalled his in-person participation in the Eastern Economic Forum in 2019, when he had announced India's "Act Far East" policy.
"As a result, India's cooperation with various sectors in Russia's Far East has increased. Today, this policy has become an important pillar of the India-Russia special and privileged strategic partnership," he said.
Whether it is the International North-South Transport Corridor, the Chennai-Vladivostok maritime corridor or the Northern Sea Route, connectivity will play an important role in the development of India-Russia relations in future, he added..
"India is keen to strengthen its partnership with Russia on Arctic subjects. There is immense scope for cooperation in the field of energy," the PM said.
Along with energy, India has made significant investments in Russia's Far East in the fields of pharmaceuticals and diamonds, he added.
"Russia can become an important partner for the Indian steel industry through the supply of coking coal. We can also have good cooperation in the mobility of talent," Modi said.
"Indian talent has contributed to the development of many resource-rich regions of the world. I believe that the talent and professionalism of Indians can bring about rapid development in the Russian Far East," he added.
Modi also noted that this month marks the 30th anniversary of the establishment of Indian consulate in Vladivostok. "India was the first country to open a consulate in this city. Since then, this city has witnessed many milestones in our relationship," he said.
The Eastern Economic Forum established in 2015 has also become an important platform for international cooperation in the progress of the Russian Far East. "For this, I laud the farsightedness of President Putin and congratulate him," Modi said.