India will remain Russia''s privileged strategic partner:Ivanov

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Vinay Shukla

Moscow, Jan 31 (PTI) India will remain Russia''sprivileged strategic partner and will continue to getsensitive technologies from Moscow, Russian Vice PremierSergei Ivanov said today.

The partnership with New Delhi is based on "trust" andRussia was ready to provide any "sensitive" technology, saidIvanov, while addressing the India-Russia Business Meet here.

Ivanov, who is co-chair of intergovernmentalcommission on trade and economic cooperation, said India is sofar the only country to which Russia has agreed to provideaccess to high-precision GLONASS signals for defence andsecurity requirements.

"India is so far the only country in the world, andmost probably will remain the single foreign country to whichwe have agreed to provide access to high-precision GLONASSsignals for defence and security requirements," Ivanov said,giving the example of Indo-Russian cooperation in sensitiveareas.

GLONASS is Russia''s rival of the US Pentagoncontrolled Global Positioning System (GPS) and under thetreaty with Moscow, New Delhi can use it for precisiontargeting of guided missiles.

"Our cooperation in GLONASS navigation is one suchexample," Ivanov said after his one-to-one talks with T K ANair, the Principal Secretary to Prime Minister ManmohanSingh.

Ivanov asked the Indian business to invest in Russia''spharma industry and IT.

Nair, who is here on a three-day visit with topofficials of Indian IT and Pharma companies, underlined theneed to step up cooperation in hi-tech and innovative fields,including nuclear energy.

The top Indian official said that during PresidentDmitry Medvedev''s India visit in December, the leaders of thetwo countries had agreed to focus on the thrust areas ofcooperation in hi-tech and innovative fields, includingnuclear energy, IT and pharmaceuticals and bio-technology. PTIVS

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