Russia-India-China Heads of Govt meet in the offing

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New Delhi, Mar 28 (UNI) The ongoing series of meetings at foreign minister level of Russia-India-China troika may soon be upgraded to a Head of Government meeting, a senior Russian official said today.

Konstantin V Vnukov, Director of the First Asian Department at the Russian Foreign Ministry said here that at present foreign ministers of the R-I-C troika have a central role in discussing and carrying forward issues of common interest. ''But in the near future, the heads of government can also meet,'' he added.

The next meeting of the foreign ministers of the three countries will be held in mid May at a town near the Ural Mountains in the Russian Federation. ''Yes, we have also invited Brazil to attend the meeting,'' he said in reply to a poser. ''But issues of economic and financial interests will be discussed with Brazil,'' he added. The R-I-C representatives will also discuss issues of regional importance but discussions with Brazil will necessarily centre around the ecomonic issues.

''Most consider the Security Council while referring to reforms in the United Nations...the R-I-C thinks Security Council is only a part of larger UN reforms,'' he said in reply to a question on UN vis-a-vis the troika.

Record of trilateral cooperation dates back to the first foreign ministers meeting held at the UN General Assembly in 2002. Six ministerial meetings took place by the spring of 2007, and on one occasion, when the Brazilian minister attended one, R-I-C turned into B-R-I-C.

Russian President Vladimir Putin, Chinese premiere Hu Jintao and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh have already met in St Petersburg during the G8 summit in the summer of 2006.

R-I-C has 40 per cent of the world's population, and occupies 20 per cent of world's surface, but accounts for less than 10 per cent of its GDP.

UNI NAB AE AS1641

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