Manama, Aug.24 (BNA): His Royal Highness Prime Minister Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al-Khalifa received, at Gudabiya Palace, his Indian Counterpart Narendra Modi, currently on visit to the Kingdom of Bahrain at the invitation of HRH the Premier.
HRH the Premier welcomed the key visit which, he said, reflects solid relations binding the two friendly countries and people, hoping the visit would contribute to expanding joint cooperation and serving common interests.
He commended longstanding historic and wide-ranging relations, which are based on mutual understanding and strong desire to further bolster friendship and joint cooperation towards achieving the aspirations of the two friendly countries and peoples.
He underlined Bahrain’s keenness on bolstering joint cooperation in all fields, hailing India’s political and economic leverage, impressive progress and scientific and technological strides.
HRH the Premier stressed the importance of exchanging high-profile visits to bolster joint partnerships in all sectors, highlighting both countries’ potential and investment opportunities.
He underscored the importance of cooperation agreements and memoranda of understanding in enhancing bilateral relations, exchanging expertise and building business partnerships whose windfall benefits both sides.
He commended strenuous efforts exerted by India to strengthen cooperation between the Asian states and Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries, describing interstate constructive cooperation as being necessary to confront current challenges and support programmes and plans aimed at achieving sustainable development.
The Indian Prime Minister expressed deepest thanks to HRH the Premier for the king invitation to visit the Kingdom of Bahrain, hailing his dedicated efforts to strengthen bilateral relations.
Modi described his visit to Bahrain as an important opportunity to bolster friendship and bolster cooperation, hailing the Kingdom’s role in support the international efforts to promote development and maintain security and stability.
The Indian Premier lauded Bahrain’s strides towards achieving Sustainable Development Goals, wishing the Kingdom and its friendly people further progress and stability.
During the official session of talks at Gudaibiya Palace, HRH the Premier welcomed his Indian counterpart, hailing longstanding history of friendship and strong cooperation.
He stressed the importance of the Indian Premier’s visit as an opportunity to herald a new phase in the relations of cooperation and friendship towards achieving common aspirations.
HRH the Premier looked forward to expanding joint cooperation with the Republic of India, enhancing the volume of trade exchanges and bolstering economic partnerships between the two countries.
Addressing the session of talks, he hailed India’s political and economic clout in Asia and the world, stressing Bahrain’s keenness on benefit \ing from the Indian development successes.
He commended the Indian expatriate community for their contribution to Bahrain’s development and progress as well as role in serving the national economy, which earned them respect on all levels in the Kingdom.
Modi expressed deepest congratulations to HRH the Premier on the UN proclamation of April 5 as the annual International Day of Conscience, voicing his country’s support to such an initiative.
He lauded the advanced level of Bahraini-Indian relations, reiterating his country’s keenness on further bolstering joint ties with the Kingdom, which represents a vital economic and trade gate to the region.
He commended the Government of Bahrain, chaired by HRH the Premier, for the care and facilities they provide to the Indian expatriate community in the Kingdom.
He recalled HRH the Premier’s visit to India, which contributed bolstering joint cooperation and strengthening longstanding historic friendship binding the two countries and peoples.
Modi extended an invitation to HRH the Premier to pay a visit to the Republic of India, reiterating thanks to the Bahrain’s leadership and people for the warm welcome and good hospitality.
HRH the Premier and his counterpart agreed to strengthen joint cooperation and enhancing joint ties to the level of “strategic partnership”.
They underscored the importance of consolidating high-profile political meetings and strengthening cooperation in the fields of defence, higher education, trade and economic ties and investments through the Bahrain-Indian Joint Committee.
The two sides looked forward to increasing the volume of trade exchanges, expanding interstate investments, by creating favourable investment environment and encouraging businessmen to build joint ventures.
HRH the Premier and his Indian counterpart then attended a ceremony exchanged memoranda of understanding and declarations of intent in several sectors.
Bahrain was represented by the Kingdom’s Ambassador to New Delhi Abdulrahman Al-Qaoud while Indian was represented by Ambassador to Manama Alok Kumar Sinha and Undersecretary for External Affairs T. S. Tirmurti.
The memoranda of understanding include a programme of cultural exchanges to bolster longstanding bilateral relations. The declarations of intent concern the implement of a memorandum of understanding on exploring space for peaceful purposes.
It included a memorandum of understanding on the program of cultural exchange, to strengthen the deep-rooted cultural relations between the two countries, a declaration of intent in the field of space technology on the application of a memorandum of understanding for cooperation in the field of exploration and use of outer space for peaceful purposes, and a declaration of intent on the Kingdom of Bahrain's accession to the International Solar Coalition, and a memorandum of understanding between The National Electronic Payments Network (BENEFIT) and the Indian National Payments Corporation (NPCI) to discuss cooperation and link payment systems to facilitate payments between the two countries.