External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and Mozambique Foreign Minister Jose Condungua Antonio Pacheco Thursday held talks reviewing the spectrum of bilateral ties and explored ways to intensify the relationship between the two countries, the External Affairs Ministry said.
The India-Mozambique Joint Commission on Economic, Cultural, Scientific and Technical Cooperation held here also discussed the growing defence cooperation between the two nations and the potential such collaboration offers for enhancing security in the Indian Ocean Region.
In particular, the commission highlighted the importance of working together to prevent non-traditional threats like smuggling, terrorism, piracy, poaching, a statement said.
"The two governments agreed to consider new bilateral agreements for promoting cooperation in defence and security, judicial and consular systems, traditional medicine, and cultural exchanges," it said.
The joint commission expressed satisfaction at the growing trade and investment links between the two countries, and noted that last year India was the largest destination for Mozambican exports, accounting for about 35 per cent of its total export revenue.
The two sides also reviewed the large Indian investments in coal and natural gas mining in Mozambique, noting that the African nation was among the largest destinations for Indian outward investment in Africa.
They also discussed ways to expedite progress of these investments, while noting the potential for greater Indian investment in areas like agriculture, agro-industry, infrastructure, mining, energy, and tourism.
"The joint commission reviewed the entire spectrum of bilateral relations, and noted the excellent government-to-government ties, strong business exchanges, growing trade and investment ties, vibrant development partnership, and long-standing people-to-people links between the two countries," the statement said.
The joint commission appreciated that the India-Mozambique development partnership, particularly through Lines of Credit and grant-assistance, was helping to enhance the capacity of Mozambican institutions in areas like food security, small and medium enterprises, electricity, roads, drinking water availability, solar energy and information technology.
It also expressed satisfaction over the recent progress in implementation of important projects such as the Tica-Buzi Highway being funded through an Indian credit-line of about USD 150 million, and also other major LOC projects in areas of electricity and housing.
Both sides agreed to further deepen and widen the ambit of their development cooperation, the statement said.
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