Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov will pay a working visit to India on 15 January to meet External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and discuss furthering defence and energy cooperation between the two countries.

The two foreign ministers would discuss the prospects of development of bilateral relations in the light of the goals outlined by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Vladimir Putin during their annual summit in Vladivostok in September, sources said.

They will also discuss the 2020 schedule of upcoming top-level contacts. The two leaders plan to have a comprehensive exchange of opinion on regional and international developments.

Russia is going to further develop next year a military dialogue and deepen counter-terrorism cooperation bilaterally with India in the framework of SCO, BRICS and RIC-like formats, of which both countries are members.

Russian Ambassador to India Nikolay Kudashev earlier this week told the media that a constructive dialogue between India and Russia was the basis of commonly recognised principles of international behaviour, such as non-interference in each other’s domestic affairs and mutual respect.

The Russian envoy also stated that Moscow was hopeful of the conclusion of a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between India and the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) in 2020 with the focus on transport, agriculture and small and medium enterprises.