Russia and India Maintain a High Level of Partnership

RISS senior expert Vyacheslav Usov analyzes the Russian-Indian relations. According to the analyst, India, which traditionally pursues an independent foreign policy, is interested in long-term economic and political cooperation with Russia. Over the decades, Moscow and New Delhi have developed a mutually beneficial format of relations which they intend to foster even in the new international realities.

Vyacheslav Usov notes that despite pressure from the US and its allies, there's been a significant increase in India's imports of Russian crude oil in recent months. The expert thinks there are still many opportunities to enhance the cooperation between the two countries.

Summary:

  • India has adopted a neutral stance towards Russia in the Ukrainian crisis despite being put under pressure by the West. That is not only because of its strategic autonomy policy, but also because Russia is a historical partner to India. Besides, New Dehli seeks to relate equally with all parties to the conflict in Ukraine due to pragmatic considerations. It wants to avoid a weakening that would lead Moscow to move even closer to its main rival — China. Hence, India «needs both the US/the West and Russia to deal with the China problem».

  • India is interested in cooperation with the US, but it avoids a full-fledged political and military alliance with Washington (even against China), as it wants to save room for maneuver.
India-Russia relations India Vyacheslav Usov discussion