On the sidelines of the G20 summit, Vladimir Putin took part in the Russia–India–China (RIC) meeting with Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi and President of China Xi Jinping.
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President of Russia Vladimir Putin: First, I would like to express my gratitude to our Indian and Chinese partners for supporting the initiative of a trilateral meeting.
I would like to note that Russia, India and China are bound by a centuries-long history of friendly relations, which we are building on the principles of neighbourliness, equality and mutual respect.
The last time when the RIC leaders held talks was 12 years ago, in 2006 in St Petersburg. They were indeed productive, with one of the results being the establishment of BRICS.
Since then, our foreign ministers have held regular consultations. We have maintained links between our security councils, youth and academic communities.
We believe that RIC has great prospects and cooperation within this trilateral format may efficiently complement the cooperation between our countries on a bilateral basis and within BRICS.
We proposed organising this meeting today because the situation in the world and the processes in our common region, Eurasia, require closer coordination of the three countries’ approaches. Mainly, with respect to ensuring security and building constructive inter-state relations, considering an extensive contribution of our three countries to the global development, which is around 30 percent of the world’s GDP at purchasing power parity.
It is important to adjust cooperation on the key issues of the economic agenda, including within the G20, to jointly protect the principles of just and honest competition in world trade and finance, and to assist in shaping the most open system of international economic relations that would be free of protectionism and politically motivated restrictions.
We could also get more actively involved in aligning large integration projects currently carried out with our countries’ involvement such as the Eurasian Economic Union and China’s Belt and Road initiative. New prospects arise for strengthening contacts between the ten ASEAN states and the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation.
Friends, I expect that this meeting will be productive and we can further establish a regular schedule for such meetings. Specifically, they could happen on the sidelines of major summits and international events.
Of course, it is important to continue trilateral coordination at other levels, and, when necessary, create additional mechanisms of cooperation. Thank you.
Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi (retranslated): Colleagues,
I am glad to have this opportunity to have an informal top-level meeting here in Buenos Aires. It is the first summit in this format since the RIC summit in 2006 in St Petersburg.
I want to thank President Putin for initiating this informal meeting at the top level, which gives us an opportunity to freely and openly discuss some key matters that cause concern on the global level.
Your Excellencies, without a doubt, the world today is going through a period of serious change, instability and growing geopolitical tensions. There is serious pressure being exerted on the global leadership.
Multilateral relations and the world order based on common rules are being increasingly rejected by various unilateral, transnational and local groups, and different nations around the world. We can see this happening as sanctions are imposed outside the UN mandate and protectionist policies are gaining strength.
The Doha Development Agenda within the WTO has failed. Since the Paris Agreement, we have not seen the expected level of financial commitment on behalf of the developed countries in favour of the developing states. Therefore, when it comes to climate, justice is currently at risk. We are still very far from achieving the goals of sustainable development.
Certain weak economies are still vulnerable to natural disasters. In this international context, key powers like India, Russia and China bear a particularly big responsibility.
Our three countries account for one-third of the global population. We must support the politics of multilateral relations, work towards creating a multilateral world order for this purpose, as well as ensure compliance with international law.
In the RIC format, we must work on four aspects: regional and global stability, economic prosperity, exchange of experience in areas of mutual interest, and cooperation in response to new and recurring challenges as well as existing challenges.
I agree with President Putin. Whenever we meet on the sidelines of international events, we must find an opportunity to hold such top-level RIC meetings. I believe that currently there is a growing need for us three to meet and cooperate more frequently.
We must play a special role at the global arena as well as seek ways to drive our countries’ development forward. I would like to thank President Putin once again for restoring and giving a new lease of life to this format.
President of China Xi Jinping (retranslated): Colleagues,
It is a great pleasure for me to be here with President Putin and Prime Minister Modi for an informal RIC meeting. I would like to thank Russia for organising this event.
China, Russia and India are three big countries that are making a serious contribution to global development. We are partners in global development, strategic partners. We have common interests and similar development goals.
We also bear a special responsibility for the future of the region and the world in general. Right now the world is facing new risks and challenges. Therefore, common development and close cooperation between our three countries in this context is becoming increasingly important for global stability and predictability.
In the past ten years, our three countries have been involved in an active dialogue and cooperation in the spirit of openness, solidarity, mutual understanding and trust.
We succeeded in achieving serious progress in this area. I hope that this meeting will also result in thorough talks with Prime Minister Modi and President Putin on RIC cooperation in the new environment, in order to improve our consensus, cooperation and coordination so that together we can promote peace in the whole world, stability and development.