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India and Russia should deepen their economic and industrial relations further than having a buyer-seller relationship, said Russian Senator Konstantin Dolgov. “India is an important partner for Russia in logistics but the relationship should not be just a buyer-seller relationship. India should take steps to deepen its economic relations with Russia,” Dolgov told IANS here on Monday.

Dolgov representing the Murmansk Oblast constituency in Russia was here to participate in the session on `Production of Rare Earth Metals. Global Demand and National Challenges’ at the global nuclear power conference AtomExpo 2024.

The two-day conference-cum-exhibition organised by the Russian integrated nuclear power major Rosatom kickstarted here on Monday.

According to him, apart from the government-to-government relations, corporate groups in both countries can form manufacturing joint ventures to make in India or in Russia.

Agreeing that there is the issue of payment owing to the sanctions by the US and other European countries Dolgov said India should find a way to solve the problem.

“Payments and industrial cooperation are the two issues. If India is ready, then we are ready,” Dolgov remarked.

At the session, the delegates referred to the industrial relationship that Russia has with China.

According to officials, Russia wants to attain self-sufficiency in the area of rare earth metals. And work has begun to that effect.

The extraction and processing of rare and rare earth metals is an important condition for the raw material sovereignty and technological development of hi-tech industries.

All Hi-Tech industries have a special economic status and in this sense directly depend on the mineral resource base or export-import cooperation.

Rapid increase in the production of rare earth metals and their processing into higher-grade products is the most important condition for meeting the growing demand both domestically and on the global market, said Rosatom.

According to Russian officials, by 2030, there will be a 70 per cent growth in electric mobility and there will be a demand for rare earth metals.

Officials said in 2023, the number of electric vehicles (EV) was about 7.4 thousand and it is expected to touch about half a million.