Shortage of information about Russia in India and vice versa continues to be a perennial problem affecting the mutual business opportunities for both countries, Oleg N Avdeev, Russian Consul General to South India, said here on Thursday.

He was speaking at ‘Economic and Investment potential of Altain Region’ event, organised by the Government of Altai Region, Russian Federation and Indo-Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industries (IRCCI), Chennai. The event, which saw government officials and a business delegation from Russia’s Altai region and Tamil Nadu business community, to highlight potential business opportunities and areas of mutual cooperation  between the two regions.

Avdeev added the shortage of information is purely ‘technical’ and can be easily addressed by bringing together business communities of both countries on such platforms. “Altai is a unique region in southern Siberia and it remains largely unexplored by businesses outside Russia.”

Bilateral trade

Data provided by the Indian Ministry of Commerce show that in 2021-22, India’s export to Russia stood at $3.25 billion against $9.86 billion in imports. In the current fiscal, between April-Jan, India’s export to Russia stood at $2.48 billion while imports from Russia zoomed to $37.28 billion due surge in crude oil imports from Russia. 

VM Lakshminarayanan, Founder & Chairman, IRCCI Chennai, said both India and Russia have different styles of business, and there is a need for both countries to understand the business style of each other. He said closer business ties will enable India to bring advanced technologies from Russia to India while India can benefit from offering abundant scope for marketing Indian products. 

The event also saw the signing of an MoU between the government of the ALTAI Region (Russian Federation) and Indo Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industries to strengthen cooperation in trade, industry, investment and culture. 

In a presentation, Altai officials, led by Vitaly Snesar, Deputy Chairman, Government of Altai Region, said the region offers business potential in areas like agro-industrial complex, chemical industry, forestry, machine building & instrumentation, biopharma, tourism services and light industry.