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India, Russia Sign Pact to Open Maritime Route between Chennai and Vladivostok Ports

India and Russia have agreed to open a maritime route between the ports of Chennai and Vladivostok to ensure connectivity between the two countries.

A Memorandum of Intent was signed between the Indian Ministry of Shipping and Russia's Ministry of Transport for the development of maritime communications between the ports of Chennai and Vladivostok in Russia's Far East Region after Prime Minister Narendra Modi's talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

PM Modi first Indian PM to visit Russian Far East Region

Prime Minister Modi, who arrived in Russia on a two-day visit on Wednesday, is the first Indian prime minister to visit to the Russian Far East Region. He will also attend the Eastern Economic Forum (EEF) on Thursday.

"Opening of this route between Chennai and Vladivostok assumes significance because it ensures there will be connectivity between the two major ports which will give impetus to the cooperation between India and the Russian Far East," Indian Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale told reporters here.

This opens up a shorter sea route from India to Northern Europe thru Vladivostok

The foreign secretary said this will open up a new and shorter sea route from India to Northern Europe via Vladivostok. He also indicated that there may not be immediate shipping service between Chennai and the Far eastern Russian Port. But the sea route has huge potential in future he said.

Putin optimistic about manpower exports as Russia has shortage of labor

Mr.Gokhale said India is looking not just at the energy sector in Russia but also the resources, forestry and agriculture sectors. He said Mr.Modi proposed and Putin was also optimistic about manpower exports as Russia has a shortage of labor and "in this context the MoU on opening a route between Chennai and Vladivostok assumes significance."

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