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Hind Al Soulia - Riyadh - Saudi Gazette report
NEW DELHI — Bahrain and India sought to strengthen bilateral ties during the third ministerial meeting of the High Joint Commission, which was held on Wednesday in New Delhi, the Bahrain News Agency reported.
The meeting was co-chaired by Bahrain’s Foreign Minister Abdullatif Al-Zayani and his Indian counterpart, S. Jaishankar.
In the meeting, both sides discussed a number of topics on the agenda, including reviewing bilateral relations, political relations, high-level visits, bilateral institutional mechanisms, commercial and economic relations and trends in bilateral trade and investment, and following up on agreements and memoranda of understanding.
They discussed joint strategy and cooperation in the post-COVID-19 phase, vaccines and pharmaceuticals, cooperation in the fields of security and defense, consular/labor issues, and the integration of employment portals, in addition to culture, tourism, education, youth, and sports. They also exchanged views on regional, international, and multilateral issues and issues of common concern.
In the joint statement issued after the meeting, the two sides expressed satisfaction with the course of close friendship and periodic high-level consultations between the two friendly countries, which further promoted and diversified their bilateral cooperation.
The Indian side expressed its thanks to the leadership and government of Bahrain for the safety, security, and well-being of the Indian community in the kingdom, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, and for providing free vaccination for everyone, including members of the Indian community. The two sides also agreed to continue their cooperation in combating the Coronavirus pandemic.
They valued the role of the Indian community in Bahrain as an important link between the two countries and its vital contribution to the development process in Bahrain. While the Indian side commended Bahrain's open and tolerant policies and its welcoming community, which made it a preferred destination for Indian professionals and workers.
Moreover, the two sides expressed their appreciation for the need for closer economic and trade cooperation between the two countries once the COVID-19 pandemic subsides. They also discussed ways to expand cooperation in a range of fields, including oil and gas, infrastructure, investments, renewable energy, information technology, and other scientific fields.
In addition, the two sides stressed the importance of the business and industry sector in pushing forward economic and commercial cooperation between the two countries, expressing their aspiration to hold a meeting between the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry and the Bahrain Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
They agreed to deepen participation in capacity building and focused cooperation between relevant government agencies and the private sector in the two countries in the fields of solar energy, wind energy, as well as clean hydrogen.
They also discussed major global developments and regional and multilateral issues of common interest and stressed the importance of securing peace and stability in Asia and the Middle East.
Earlier in the day, the Bahraini foreign minister met with Indian Vice President Venkaiah Naidu.
During the meeting, the Indian vice president praised the friendship and cooperation between the two friendly countries and people and the development and progress of their relations at all levels. He also stressed the importance of continuous communication between senior officials in the two countries and expanding the horizons for bilateral cooperation to serve the common interests.
He expressed his thanks to Bahrain for hosting a large number of the members of the Indian community, praising the care and attention paid by His Majesty the King, especially in light of the repercussions of the coronavirus pandemic.
Foreign Minister Al-Zayani conveyed the greetings and appreciation of Bahrain’s king and Crown Prince to the Indian president, the vice president, and the prime minister, along with their wishes of further development and progress to India and its friendly people. He also expressed his pleasure to visit India, in order to lead the Kingdom's delegation to the third meeting of the High Joint Commission between the two countries.
Al-Zayani praised the historical friendship between Bahrain and India, which is based on mutual respect and coordination, stressing Bahrain's desire to promote cooperation with India in various fields, wishing the Republic of India and its friendly people continued development, progress, and prosperity.
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