First India-Gulf Cooperation Council held in Saudi Arabia

During the India-GCC meeting on March 20, the two sides conveyed happiness over the progress made in trade and investment between India-GCC countries.

Riyadh: The first round of the India-Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Senior Officers Meeting (SOM) was held in Riyadh. Ausaf Sayeed, secretary(CPV&OIA), Ministry of External Affairs held a meeting with Saudi Vice Minister for Foreign Affairs, Eng. Waleed bin Abdul Kareem El-Khereiji on the Political-Security-Social-Cultural pillar of India-Saudi Arabia Strategic Partnership Council (SPC), the Ministry of External Affairs said in a press release.

During the India-GCC meeting on March 20, the two sides conveyed happiness over the progress made in trade and investment between India-GCC countries. The Indian delegation was led by Ausaf Sayeed, while the GCC delegation was led by Abdul Aziz Bin Hamad Al-Owaishaq, Assistant Secretary-General for Political Affairs and Negotiations, GCC.

Both sides agreed for an early finalisation of the India-GCC Free Trade Agreement (FTA), the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said in the press release. Sayeed called for more collaboration between India and GCC countries in renewable energy, food security, health, IT sector and counter-terrorism. The two sides proposed the formation of Joint Working Groups to cater to particular areas of cooperation between India and GCC countries.

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“Secretary(CPV&OIA) invited for more collaboration between India and GCC countries in renewable energy, food security, health, IT sector and counter-terrorism,” the Ministry of External Affairs stated in the press release.

Ausaf Sayeed on Wednesday held a meeting with Saudi Arabia’s Minister for Hajj and Umrah Tawfiq Al-Rabiah. Sayeed expressed gratitude to Tawfiq Al-Rabiah for the allocation of a Haj quota of 1,75,025 for India for 2023, the MEA said in the press release.

Sayeed said an invitation was extended to him to visit India at his earliest convenience. Indian Embassy in Saudi Arabia tweeted, “Secretary (CPV&OIA), Dr Ausaf Sayeed @drausaf met with Minister of Hajj and Umrah of Saudi Arabia H.E. Tawfiq Al-Rabiah and had discussions on various issues pertaining Indian Hajj and Umrah Pilgirms.”

On March 20, Sayeed met Saudi Arabia’s Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs Eng. Waleed bin Abdul Kareem El-Khereiji on the Political-Security-Social-Cultural pillar of India-Saudi Arabia Strategic Partnership Council (SPC). Both sides assessed the continued high-level contact between India and Saudi Arabia.

Sayeed discussed the progress made under the Committee on Economy and Investment of the SPC with Saudi Centre for International Strategic Partnerships (SCISP) President and CEO Dr Faisal Al-Sugair.

The two sides agreed to make further progress on priority opportunities identified under the Committee in various sectors, including renewable energy, grid connectivity, pharmaceuticals, food security, IT, fintech and water resources, the release stated.

On March 19, Sayeed met the Deputy Minister for International Partnerships in the Saudi Ministry of Investment Mohammad Al Hassnah and discussed opportunities for bilateral investment exchanges. The two sides discussed setting up an investment bridge for accelerating the pending investment projects and facilitating investors.

(Except for the headline, the story has not been edited by Siasat staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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