Maputo [Mozambique], April 15 (ANI): External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Friday reiterated that India and Mozambique have a lot in common, including a shared vision for progress and prosperity at the 5th Joint Commission Meeting between the two countries.
"Our bilateral cooperation spans across a wide spectrum of areas, including trade and investment, agriculture, health, education, and defense. A review of our bilateral relations was conducted in the Foreign Office Consultations that were held between us in July last 2022. This Joint Commission is therefore, an excellent platform to take stock of the progress made in our ties and to explore new avenues of cooperation. Such institutional mechanisms of interaction form the structure of any bilateral relationship and indeed its regular meeting is central to the growth and steady advancement of our ties," said Jaishankar.
He took stock of progress made in a wide spectrum of areas of cooperation, including tradeinvestment, agriculture, energy, railways, health, education, development cooperation and defense.
Jaishankar further stated that the two countries have a robust bilateral trade of about USD 4 billion.
" It is a trade in which both countries have an interest in growing. We are looking at discussing new areas in meeting the expectations and aspirations of our people. There are new demands and new opportunities on both sides and surely the Joint Commission should explore that very actively," he said.
India and Mozambique share a long-standing and friendly relationship that is deeply rooted in historical, cultural, and economic ties.
"Our solidarity goes back to an era where we have both struggled for freedom and before I came to this meeting today, I had the honour of paying homage to your leaders of that struggle at Heroes Square. This relationship, for many decades, has been nurtured by the keenest interest shown by our leaders. It is a matter of pride for us, that every President of Mozambique has visited India. From our side, the historic visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2016, gave a new impetus to our bilateral relations. We look forward to receiving President Nyusi in India for the next edition of Vibrant Gujarat when it takes place," said Jaishankar.
The EAM also expressed his heartfelt sympathy for the devastation caused by Cyclone Freddy.
"Our Prime Minister had expressed his sentiments in his tweet immediately after the storm. We had also offered the services of our naval ship, INS Sujata, to the Government of Mozambique during its stay in this country," said Jaishankar.
A large number of Indian nationals call Mozambique home. There is a community here, for a very long time and certainly, their role in bridging the economic partnership between our countries is very, very significant.
"We also have a large Indian investment in this country, today estimated at about USD 11 billion, largely in the domain of energy and mining. And our development partnership which extends to 14 Lines of Credit, to the value of more than USD 770 million, is another example, a very practical example of South-South cooperation," said Jaishankar.
Earlier, Jaishankar took a ride in a 'Made in India' train in the country's capital Maputo. "I had the privilege of riding with the Transport Minister in a train which was made in India and which is today operated by the railways of this country. And that, is an example of how, we have been supporting each other in the growth of infrastructure, in responding to the needs of our population, in creating affordable and accessible opportunities for each other's people," he said.
Talking about defence ties between the two nations, he said, "Our defence ties have also taken giant strides in the past few years and we are again cooperating very effectively, especially when it comes to dealing with the challenges of terrorism.""I am accompanied by not just senior officials from the Ministry of External Affairs, but the head of our Working Group dealing with defence and security matters, two very important heads of enterprises dealing with energy and with railways, which are core areas of our cooperation. I look forward to a very productive meeting of the Joint Commission. And I am very confident that my visit today, my discussions with you, the meeting of our officials, the calls that I will have after this; all this will contribute to giving new directions to our partnership and taking our cooperation to a high level," he added.
India-Mozambique cooperation today spans a very vast range of economic, developmental, people-to-people, and security domains. They also build on a long tradition of political cooperation, and this tradition has been particularly visible in multilateral forums.
"We are very glad that Mozambique is today, a non-permanent member of the Security Council and your presence, Minister, gives us a lot of satisfaction at seeing that an important voice of the Global South, sits at the highest councils of the world. Our commonality of world views has again underpinned our foreign policy cooperation and certainly, today as we look at the world we are also exploring, how India and Mozambique, as two important countries in the Indian ocean, how we discharge our shared responsibility for ensuring peace and security in the Indian ocean region. I can assure you that India will always be ready to cooperate with Mozambique in this regard," said Jaishankar. (ANI)