Sputnik: You’ve been researching India-Russia trade relations for many years. What are the key areas where the two countries cooperate right now?
Shiv Vikram Khemka: Traditionally, India and Russia have been cooperating a lot in the area of aerospace, defense, energy, power, oil and gas, space, pharmaceuticals, infrastructure and, I think, there is a lot more to do in these areas and many other areas as well.
Sputnik: We’ve heard about new projects in gold and diamond projects. What are the prospects of these projects? Would it be a nice addition to what we already have?
Shiv Vikram Khemka: Yes, so our company SUN Gold, our group has been working here for 60 years now, acquired a project in Chitinskaya Oblast about 10 years ago and we are just completing now an agreement with the Chinese national gold company, China National Gold [Group Corporation] (CNGC) and the Far East Development Fund, as well as some investors from Brazil and from South Africa and we are making it the first BRICS project in history. But of course, clearly, there are some leaders in this, the China National Gold company will lead this project and develop it.
We will produce over 6.5 tons of gold a year, create a lot of employment, tax payments in Chita Oblast and rejuvenation of that part of the region where we are. And we are very excited [about] this new format, a multilateral format, where we bring different things to the table, and I think that as a team we can do much more, not only in Russia but in other parts of the world. And so, we are very much looking at this as a new model of working together where someone is doing more leading, someone is doing more investment, perhaps, someone is doing more management, someone is just an investor, and someone brings knowledge of the region. As a team we can create some interesting projects and we are looking at probably five or 10 projects around the world right now where we would work in a format of BRICS or the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO).
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Sputnik: How does BRICS help in this regard?
Shiv Vikram Khemka: I think it’s more about having partners who bring different skills to the table and some of whom are getting to know each other. So, for example, you know, our investors from South Africa may not know a lot about Russian gold mining, but they know gold mining because they live in South Africa, they have done mining in that area — so the next time they see an opportunity, we can go with them, we don’t know much about that region of the world, but we know about gold mining. So, I think it’s about sharing opportunities together and building a team that starts to work together in different ideas and different geographies.
The views and opinions expressed by the speaker do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.
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