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India thanks GCC for taking care of Indian diaspora during COVID-19 pandemic

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New Delhi [India], November 10 (ANI): India on Wednesday thanked Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) for taking care of the large Indian diaspora in their countries during the COVID-19 pandemic.

In a meeting between External Affairs Minister (EAM) S Jaishankar and GCC Secretary-General Dr. Nayef Falah Mubarak Al-Hajraf, Jaishankar thanked GCC.

Jaishankar thanked the GCC countries for taking care of the large Indian diaspora in their countries during the Covid-19 pandemic and medical assistance provided during the second wave in India in April-May 2021, according to a MEA statement.

He also apprised the Secretary-General of the progress made by India in its vaccination programme. Both leaders expressed satisfaction at India-GCC cooperation in handling the unprecedented challenges posed by the pandemic.

Further, Jaishankar also hoped for further easing of restrictions by GCC countries on air travel from India and mutual recognition of vaccination certificates.

GCC Secretary-General is on his first official visit to India on November 10-11, 2021. Both leaders recalled the historic and friendly India-GCC relations, which have seen robust progress in recent years. They undertook a detailed review of the India-GCC relations and discussed ways to further enhance them.

GCC Secretary-General lauded the contribution of the Indian community to the Gulf countries and said that GCC wants to be a partner of India in its economic growth.

Both leaders also discussed trade and investment relations between India and GCC. They expressed satisfaction that essential trade between India and GCC continued even during the Covid lockdowns. Both sides agreed on the need for further securing supply chains, including in the areas of energy security, food security and health care. Jaishankar highlighted India’s attractiveness as a destination for FDI, including for sovereign wealth funds in GCC countries, added MEA release.

They also exchanged views on regional and international issues of mutual concern. Jaishankar congratulated Al-Hajraf for the constructive role played by GCC in promoting stability and prosperity in the region.

Both sides decided to convene the next India-GCC Troika Political Dialogue at an early date. The last round of the Dialogue was held virtually in November 2020. Both sides also agreed to further institutionalize the annual meetings between Jaishankar and GCC Troika by signing an MOU in the coming months.

Dr. Nayef Falah Mubarak Al-Hajraf will also hold discussions with Minister of Commerce and Industry, Piyush Goyal on November 11, 2021, read the release. (ANI)

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