A trilateral meeting of the focal points of India, France and the United Arab Emirates was held on Thursday during which three parties exchanged views on the Indo-Pacific region and explored maritime security prospects among other other areas of cooperation. The Indian part was led by Sandeep Chakravorty, joint secretary (Western Europe) and Vipul, joint secretary (Gulf), the French part was led by Bertrand Lortholary, director (Asia and Oceania) and Emmanuel Suquet, deputy director (Middle East and North Africa ) of the French Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs, and the Emirati side was headed by Ahmed Burhaima, Deputy Director of the Department of Economic and Commercial Affairs of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the United Arab Emirates.
The three parties exchanged views on the Indo-Pacific region and explored potential areas of trilateral cooperation, including maritime security, humanitarian and disaster relief (HADR), blue economy, regional connectivity, cooperation in multilateral forums, energy and food security, innovation and startups, supply chain resilience, and cultural and people-to-people cooperation. They also discussed next steps to deepen trilateral cooperation in the Indo-Pacific region.
Both India and France are maritime nations with vibrant maritime economy sectors like marine technology and scientific research, fisheries, ports and shipping, to name a few. Possessing vast exclusive economic zones, their fate is closely linked to the sea and the ocean. The two nations intend to make the blue economy a driving force for the progress of their respective societies in respecting the environment and coastal and marine biodiversity. Both countries aim to contribute to scientific knowledge and conservation of the oceans and to ensure that the ocean remains a global commons, an area of freedom and trade, based on the rule of law.
India and France have traditionally maintained close and friendly relations. In 1998, the two countries entered into a strategic partnership that is emblematic of their convergence of views on a range of international issues outside of a close and growing bilateral relationship. India and the UAE enjoy strong ties of friendship based on centuries-old cultural, religious and economic ties between the two nations. They established diplomatic relations in 1972. While the UAE opened its embassy in India in 1972, the Indian Embassy in the UAE was opened in 1973.
The traditionally strong bilateral relations enjoyed by India and the UAE have been given a boost with regular exchanges of high-level bilateral visits from time to time. The momentum generated by the visits at the highest level was supported by consecutive reciprocal visits at the level of Foreign Ministers as well. (ANI)
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