India Wants Fair Diamond Import Deal with Russia: Minister

India’s Commerce and Industry Minister Suresh Prabhu on Friday called for a government-level agreement with Russia for diamond imports in a manner that does not adversely impact the balance of payment of India, PTI news agency reports.

He said that India is an important hub for cutting and polishing of diamonds and Russia has huge diamond reserves, so the partnership would suit both sides.

“If we can work out a government-to-government agreement in which we import…in a manner that does not adversely impact the balance of payment and we will meet our demand. (In this way) Russian exports will increase to India and we import it, process it and re-export that, and both get benefitted,” he said.

Prabhu was speaking at the India-Russia Business Summit, organized by industry body CII.

The minister said that there were huge opportunities in both the countries to increase trade and investments.

“Through this mechanism, we will ensure that you (Russian companies) talk to only one ministry and all your issues will be resolved at one place,” he added.

He also said that India will create a space in the Delhi-Mumbai industrial corridor for Russian firms.

Russian Economic Development minister Maxim Oreshkin meanwhile called for the introduction of rupee-rouble trade to boost bilateral trade with India and has said it is creating a strategy to increase economic cooperation with India.

“Our country is looking at an investment protection and avoidance of double taxation agreement with India…We are also looking at trade in national currencies and a strategy for economic cooperation,” Oreshkin said addressing a joint business council organized by CII on Thursday.