Wed, 10 Aug 2022

New Delhi [India], August 2 (ANI): India and Switzerland on Tuesday held the 11th round of India-Switzerland Foreign Office Consultations in New Delhi.

During the consultations, both sides undertook a comprehensive review of bilateral relations. They referred to their long-standing dynamic partnership and agreed to make it future-oriented, read the Ministry of External Affairs press release.

The consultations were co-chaired by Shri Sanjay Verma, Secretary (West) and Livia Leu, State Secretary of the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA).

Both sides appreciated that the annual bilateral trade had exceeded USD 30 billion and agreed on the importance of diversifying their trade, added the release.

Over 330 Swiss companies are present in India in sectors such as engineering, services, precision instruments, chemicals and pharmaceuticals while Indian companies are present in Switzerland in sectors such as IT, pharmaceuticals, and machinery.

The two sides took note of the progress made in the negotiations on India-Switzerland Bilateral Investment Treaty and India-EFTA Trade and Economic Partnership Agreement (TEPA) and agreed on the need for their early conclusion.

Discussions were also held on enhancing cooperation in innovation, digitalization, tourism, skill development, science and technology as well as arts and culture, said the release.

The two sides also exchanged views on multilateral and regional issues including cooperation at the UN, the upcoming G20 Presidency of India and the situation in Ukraine. Both sides also agreed to have regular consultations on the UN and other multilateral issues.

They agreed to further cultural and people-to-people relations and looked forward to commemorating 75 years of bilateral diplomatic relations next year in a befitting manner.

Both sides agreed to continue high-level exchanges and regular meetings of the institutional mechanisms such as the Joint Economic Commission, Joint Working Groups on Railways and Environment and Financial Dialogue to keep up the momentum in bilateral relations, added the release.

The talks were held in a friendly atmosphere. Both sides agreed to hold the next round of consultations at a mutually convenient date in Berne, Switzerland. (ANI)

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