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Visit of Indian food & Agri products business delegation led by Federation of Indian Export Organizations (FIEO) to Bahrain from 02-03 November 2022, 06 November 2022.

A 40 member Indian delegation representing 21 food & agri business companies and 3 Farmer Producer Organizations led by FIEO visited Bahrain from 2-3 November 2022 to explore possibilities of further expanding trade and investment relations between the two countries in this important sector. It is one of the largest ever Indian business delegation in this sector visiting Bahrain.

2. Embassy of India, in partnership with Bahrain India Society, organized a networking and B2B meet on 2nd November 2022 for the visiting delegation which was attended H.E. Mr. Mohamed Al Kooheji, Second Vice Chairman of the Bahrain Chamber of Commerce & Industry (BCCI), Mr. Abdulrahman Juma, Chairman of Bahrain India Society, Mr. Ahmed Sultan, Executive Director, Bahrain Economic Development Board, Mr. Faisal Al Sari, Chief of Food Control Section, Ministry of Health, Kingdom of Bahrain, and more than 100 senior officials, and Indian and Bahraini businessmen. During the event, Bahrain Economic Development Board gave a presentation about incentives and benefits offered by Bahrain for establishing production units, businesses/ joint ventures in Bahrain and for making Bahrain hub for expanding their business to entire Gulf and MENA region. Ministry of Health, Government of Bahrain also gave a presentation about sanitary and phytosanitary measures, food licensing, packaging and labelling requirements in Bahrain related to import of food articles.

3. Speaking on the occasion, H.E. Ambassador Piyush Srivasatava said that India aspires to turn the traditional trading relations in this sector into a strategic one and intends to be a partner of Bahrain towards its food security efforts. He highlighted significant opportunities for investment in food parks in India, and Government of India’s focus on ensuring seamless quality certification of products to be exported, for which the government has recognized 220 labs across India to provide services of testing to a wide range of products and exporters. Highlighting strong historical relations between the two countries, Mr. Mohamed Al Kooheji said that there is still immense scope to further increase bilateral trade and commerce. Mr. Abdulrahman Juma stated that two countries should expand their collaboration in research & technology in areas of mutual interest besides focusing on increasing bilateral trade.

4. Earlier in the morning of 2nd November, Bahrain Chamber of Commerce & Industry (BCCI) organized a B2B meeting for the visiting delegation in their premises which was attended by more than 80 companies. The delegation also visited Lulu, Aljazira, Megamart and Bahrain Dalla for Food Factory Company- major hyper/ supermarkets and food manufacturers of Bahrain- to have an understanding of the local market.

5. Earlier, a 13 member food and beverage delegation led by Trade Promotion Council of India (TPCI) had visited Bahrain in September 2022. India’s agricultural products global exports had grown by 20% during 2021-22 to cross USD 50 billion. Food and agro products are major component of India-Bahrain bilateral trade and constitute approximately 15% of India’s total export to Bahrain. India, traditionally, is a major supplier of rice, meat, sugar, spices, fruits and vegetable to Bahrain. In recent times, Indian processed food products, organic and healthy food items & dairy products are also getting popular in Bahrain due to their high quality and reasonable pricing. India-Bahrain bilateral trade took a quantum leap in 2021-22 and reached its highest ever level of USD 1.65 billion.

6. The visit of FIEO delegation is expected to open up further avenues to Indian and Bahraini companies to expand business and collaboration in agro and food sector. Source: Embassy of India, Manama.

Virtual meeting between Ministry of Ayush, Govt. of India and National Health Regulatory Authority (NHRA), Kingdom of Bahrain on cooperation in the field of Yoga & Ayurveda on 15th November 2022, 16 November 2022

A virtual meeting on cooperation in the field of AYUSH, with focus on Yoga & Ayurveda, was held between Ministry of Ayush, Govt. of India and National Health Regulatory Authority (NHRA) on 15th November 2022. Indian delegation was led by H.E. Dr. Manoj Nesari, Advisor, Ministry of Ayush and Bahraini delegation was led by H.E. Dr. Mariam Adhbi Al Jalahma, CEO, NHRA. H.E. Mr. Piyush Srivastava, Ambassador of India to Bahrain was also present in the meeting.

2. Two sides discussed furthering institutional collaboration for training of healthcare professional in the field of Ayurveda & Yoga as well as cooperation in regulation, registration & manufacturing of different type of alternative medicines and yoga as treatment & rehabilitation therapy.

3. The meeting provided a valuable opportunity to both sides exchange views on many issues of common interest in the field of Yoga & Ayurveda. NHRA requested Indian side’s assistance in drafting of regulatory framework, certification of Indian doctors/healthcare workers and approval of Indian medicines coming to Bahrain, to which M/o Ayush responded positively. Both side also discussed the possibilities of setting up Ayurveda hospital and training centre in Bahrain.

4. Ministry of Ayush invited Bahraini delegation led by NHRA to visit India for further discussion as well as visit to Ayurveda and Yoga institutions and medicines production centres at the earliest at a mutually convenient date. Source: Embassy of India, Manama.


Chief Guest at India’s Republic Day Celebrations 2023, 27 November 2022.

At the invitation of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, H.E. Mr. Abdel Fattah Al Sisi, President of the Arab Republic of Egypt, will be the Chief Guest at India’s Republic Day celebrations on January 26, 2023. This is the first time that President of the Arab Republic of Egypt will be the Chief Guest at our Republic Day.

2. India and Egypt enjoy warm and friendly relations based on civilizational and deep-rooted people-to-people ties. Both countries are celebrating the 75th anniversary of establishment of diplomatic relations this year. Egypt has been invited as a ‘Guest Country’ during India’s Presidency of G-20 in 2022-23. Source: Ministry of External Affairs, India.


Visit of H.E. Dr Ali Bagheri Kani, Deputy Foreign Minister for Political Affairs of the Islamic Republic of Iran to India, 24 November 2022.

Foreign Office Consultations were held between India and Iran on 24 November 2022 in New Delhi. The Iranian delegation was led by Deputy Foreign Minister for Political Affairs H.E. Dr. Ali Bagheri Kani. The India delegation was led by Foreign Secretary Shri Vinay Mohan Kwatra.

2. During the delegation level talks both sides discussed the entire gamut of bilateral relations including political, economic, cultural and consular engagement. The two sides reiterated their commitment to continue cooperation for development of the Shahid Behesti terminal of the Chabahar Port.

3. The two sides exchanged views on regional and international issues including Afghanistan . Deputy Foreign Minister Dr. Kani briefed the Foreign Secretary on issues related to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

4. During the visit, Deputy Foreign Minister Dr. Kani also called on the External Affairs Minister Dr. S. Jaishankar. Source: Ministry of External Affairs, India.


Participants FIEO (Federation of Indian Export Organisation) Business Delegation in the Baghdad International Fair, Iraq, from 1-10 November 2022, 03 November 2022.

A 75-member trade and business delegation comprising of 50 Indian companies, sponsored by FIEO (Federation of Indian Export Organization) participated in the 46th edition of Baghdad International Fair (BIF) from November 1-10, 2022. A pavilion of total area of 450 sqm was assigned to Indian companies. FIEO is an apex body of the Government recognised Export Promotion Councils, Commodity Boards and Export Development Authorities in India, set up jointly by the Ministry of Commerce, Government of India and private trade and industry in the year 1965, serving the interests of over 200,000 exporters from every Industry and Services sector in the country. The Indian companies are participating in BIF after a gap of four year.

2. The sectors represented by the Indian companies are electricity and power, hardware and tools, construction and equipment, healthcare and medical equipment, IT and communication, automobile and transportation, agriculture, electrical and electronics components, marble, granite and ceramics, food and beverage, household appliances, etc.

3. The Embassy of India organized a BSM / B2B meeting on November 3, 2022, for the visiting Indian trade delegation and various Iraqi businesses, viz., Baghdad Chamber of Commerce, Iraqi Industry Association and India-Iraq Economic Cooperation Foundation and other stakeholders with a view to promote exports from India to Iraq.

4. The bilateral trade between India and Iraq in FY 2021-22 amounted to US$ 34.33 billion, accounting for about 3.32% of India's total foreign trade. Indian exports to Iraq mainly consist of cereals, iron and steel, meat and meat products, pharmaceutical products, agro-chemicals, cosmetics, rubber manufactured products, paints, gems and jewellery, ceramics, manufactures of metals, machine tools, electrical machinery and instruments, transport equipment, electronic goods, handicrafts, sugar, tea, garments whereas India imports crude oil from Iraq. Iraq is the 5th largest trade partner of India.

5. Ambassador welcomed the Indian delegation and members of Iraqi business community present on the occasion to the business meeting. He presented an overview of the business and investment prospects, future trends, sectors of partnerships, regulatory provision governing the trade and commercial activities in India. He stated that there is immense potential for exponential growth in export of Indian goods and services in the Iraqi market, including Kurdistan region and called for concerted efforts by Indian companies to vigorously explore the opportunities in Iraq. The participants expressed views about their firm desire to promote business relations between both the countries and further strengthen and reinforce business linkages. It was assured that Embassy would provide all necessary assistance, including facilitation of business visas to Iraqi business community. Source: Embassy of India, Baghdad.


PM congratulates Benjamin Netanyahu for his success in Israeli General Elections, 04 November 2022.

The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi has congratulated Benjamin Netanyahu for his success in Israeli General Elections.

Shri Modi also thanked Prime Minister, Yair Lapid for giving priority to the India-Israel strategic partnership.

The Prime Minister tweeted;

"Mazel Tov my friend @netanyahu for your electoral success. I look forward to continuing our joint efforts to deepen the India-Israel strategic partnership."

"Thank you @yairlapid for your priority to the India-Israel strategic partnership. I hope to continue our fruitful exchange of ideas for the mutual benefit of our peoples." Source: Press Information Bureau.


Visit of Secretary (CPV & OIA) to the Kingdom of Morocco, 27 November 2022.

Secretary (CPV &OIA) Dr. Ausaf Sayeed paid an official visit to the Kingdom of Morocco from 22-25 November 2022.

2. During the visit, Secretary (CPV&OIA) represented India at the 9th Global Forum of the UN Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC) held in Fez on 22-23 November 2022.

3. In Rabat, Secretary (CPV&OIA) called on H.E. Ms. Leila Benali, Minister of Energy Transition and Sustainable Development of the Kingdom of Morocco and discussed cooperation in the sectors of fertilizers, renewable energy, climate change etc. between the two countries.

4. He also co-chaired the 5th round of India-Morocco Foreign Office Consultations during which a wide range of bilateral, regional and global issues of mutual interest were discussed. Bilateral trade between India and Morocco is presently at an all-time high (USD 3.2 billion in 2021-22). About 40 Indian companies in diverse sectors are operating in Morocco. A sizable number of candidates from Morocco have been benefiting from our capacity building programmes, including ITEC. Both sides are keen to enhance the level of economic engagement and people to people exchanges.

5. Secretary (CPV&OIA) also interacted with the Indian community, Indian business leaders and ITEC Alumni from Morocco. The visit provided further impetus to the bilateral friendly relations between the two countries. Source: Ministry of External Affairs, India.


Dr. Bharati Pravin Pawar, Hon'ble Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare, concludes successful visit to the Sultanate of Oman to participate in the Third Global Conference on Antimicrobial Resistance, 25 November 2022.

Dr. Bharati Pravin Pawar, Minister of State (MOS) for Health and Family Welfare of India, visited the Sultanate of Oman on November 24-25, 2022,and participated in the 'Third Global High-Level Ministerial Conference on Antimicrobial Resistance' held in Muscat.

2. During the Conference, the Hon'ble Minister delivered India's National Statement recognizing AMR as a multifaceted, complex problem with consequences for individuals and healthcare systems. She also highlighted India’s high level political commitment under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to tackle AMR holistically. She noted that India launched a National Action Plan (NAP) for AMR, in April 2017 to improve awareness, enhance surveillance measures, strengthen infection prevention and control, and promote investments to control AMR. In her statement she also urged all countries to commit to a strong political will, promote inter-sectoral coordination between public and private sectors, and comprehensively strengthen the healthcare systems worldwide to tackle AMR. MoS also participated in a Ministerial panel discussion on AMR and the Political Response and shared India’s experiences and suggestions to enhance global political commitment to this issue.

4. During her stay in Muscat, Hon’ble MoS met with H.E Dr. Hilal Al Sabti, the Health Minister of Oman and warm and cordial discussions on ways to deepen the already excellent cooperation between India and Oman in the field of health and wellness. MoS also met with the Minister of Health H.E. Mr. Ernst Kuipers and Vice Minister of Health H.E. Marjolijn Sonnema, of Netherlands and the Minister of Social Work H.E. Mr. Jakob Forssmed of Sweden on the sidelines of the Conference, exploring ways to enhance cooperation in the healthcare sector. Hon'ble MoS also held discussions with other leaders, policymakers, key global experts, representatives from the private sector, civil society, research institutions, and multilateral organizations on the issue of antimicrobial resistance (AMR).

5. Hon'ble MoS also had a fruitful interaction with the prominent members of the Indian community and community organizations in Oman. She spoke about India's successful transformational journey under the visionary leadership of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi. She invited them to participate enthusiastically in the Pravasi Bharatiya Diwas (PBD), being organized in January 2023 in Indore.

6. During her visit, Hon'ble MoS also offered prayers at the Shiva Temple located in Muscat, one of the oldest Indian temples in the region. Source: Embassy of India, Muscat.


Message of Hon'ble Prime Minister of India Shri Narendra Modi on the occasion of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian people, 02 November 2022.

On the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian people, I reiterate India's unwavering support to the Palestinian cause.

India's ties with the friendly people of Palestine are rooted in our common history. We have always supported the Palestinian people in their pursuit of economic and social development with dignity and self-reliance. We are hopeful that direct talks between the Palestinian and Israeli sides will resume to find a comprehensive and negotiated solution.

India has also been at the forefront of extending developmental assistance to Palestine over the years. Our flagship projects such as India-Palestine Techno Park, Palestine National Printing Press and four Schools are already functional while other projects, including the Palestine Diplomatic Academy, Women Empowerment Centre (Turathi) and a Super Speciality Hospital are under implementation.

We have substantially enhanced our contribution to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) in recent years to strengthen its hands for humanitarian activities.

On behalf of the Government and the people of India, I extend my best wishes to the people of the State of Palestine in their journey to achieve statehood, peace and prosperity. Source: Representative Office of India, Ramallah.


Visit of the Hon’ble Vice President of India Shri Jagdeep Dhankhar to Qatar, 18 November 2022.

At the invitation of His Highness Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, Amir of the State of Qatar, the Hon’ble Vice President of India will pay an official visit to Qatar on 20-21 November and represent India at the inauguration of the FIFA World Cup 2022.

2. India and Qatar enjoy close and friendly relations with multifaceted partnership extending to areas of trade, energy, security, defence, health, culture, education, among others. In the last financial year, bilateral trade crossed US $15 billion. Qatar plays an important partner in India’s energy security and India participates in Qatar’s food security. Next year, both countries would be celebrating 50 years of establishment of full diplomatic relations.

3. People to people ties form an important element of bilateral relationship with over 840,000 Indians in Qatar. During his visit, besides attending the inaugural ceremony on 20 November, Hon’ble Vice President will also interact with the members of the Indian community.

4. Hon’ble Vice President’s visit would be an opportunity to join a close and friendly country Qatar as it hosts a major sporting event and also to acknowledge the role played and support extended by Indians in this World Cup. Source: Ministry of External Affairs, India.

Visit of Hon’ble Vice President of India to Qatar, 21 November 2022.

Hon’ble Vice President of India (HVPI) Shri Jagdeep Dhankhar paid a visit to Qatar from 20-21 November, 2022 at the invitation of His Highness Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, Amir of the State of Qatar. He attended the Opening Ceremony of FIFA World Cup 2022 on November 20 and met a cross-section of Indian community on November 21.

2. HVPI was warmly welcomed on arrival by a member of the Qatari royal family, Minister of State HE Sheikh Fahad bin Faisal Al-Thani at the airport.

3. HVPI joined H.H. Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, Amir of the State of Qatar and other dignitaries at the inauguration of the World Cup. On the sidelines, he interacted with the Amir of Qatar, UN Secretary General, FIFA President, IOC President and several other world leaders.

4. During the visit, HVPI met several prominent Indian community members including businessmen, senior members of different Indian community organisations, educationists, doctors and blue collar workers.

5. HVPI addressed a large gathering of Indian community members. He appreciated the contribution of over 840,000 Indians living in Qatar in enhancing people-to-people relations between the two countries. He highlighted India’s progress in various sectors and asked them to join in the Pravasi Bharatiya Diwas celebrations in January next year.

6. HVPI also visited the Qatar National Museum. He reflected on the age-old cultural and people-to-people contacts between India and Qatar.

7. The visit further boosts the India-Qatar bilateral friendly relations as both countries celebrate 50 years of establishment of full diplomatic relations in 2023. Source: Ministry of External Affairs, India.


Inauguration of International Film Festival, 2022, 28 November 2022.

The Embassy of India in Riyadh is Co-hosting the 10th edition of the Ambassador's Choice-International Film Festival, from November 24–December 16, 2022, along with 13 other Embassies. They include Algeria, Australia, Bangladesh, Cuba, France, Kazakhstan, Mexico, Norway, Philippines, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, and the United States of America. 

The festival was inaugurated by the Chief Guest H.E. Mr. Meshal Al Saleh, Director of Asia region, Ministry of Culture along with Charge d’ Affaires Mr. M.R. Sajeev and Ambassadors/ representatives of the participating Embassies. The dignitaries unveiled the official poster of the film festival of the year.

During his address, the Charge d' Affaires Mr. M.R. Sajeev thanked the Embassies and Saudi authorities for their collaboration. He also added that Indian cinema is producing more than 2000 films annually. For a number of years the Indian film industry has ranked first in the world in terms of annual film production. 

Referring to Saudi cinema, the Charge d' Affaires mentioned that, though it is a nascent industry, it has already made a strong presence on the global stage. It has produced many brilliant stories in recent years. 

The inauguration of this festival was attended by Ambassadors, Diplomats, Saudi nationals, journalists, members of the Indian community, and expatriates of other nationalities. The festival will screen 14 movies, of diverse genres, which include many acclaimed and renowned movies such as Shams Al-Ma'arif, Bareilly Ki Barfi, Frida, Un Cuento Chino, The Sapphires (2012), Habanastation, You'll Die at Twenty, Hope, Délicieux, Bar Boys Hasina, A Daughter's Tale, CODA, HELIOPOLIS, The Newspaper.

The festival comes as part of the commemoration of 75 years of India's independence (Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav), which also coincides with the completion of 75 years of India-Saudi diplomatic relations. Source: Embassy of India, Riyadh.


Visit of Minister of Foreign Affairs & Expatriates of the Syrian Arab Republic to India, 18 November 2022.

Dr. Fayssal Mekdad, Minister of Foreign Affairs & Expatriates of the Syrian Arab Republic is on an official visit to India from 17-21 November 2022. This is his first visit to India as Foreign Minister.

2. External Affairs Minister Dr. S. Jaishankar hosted the visiting Foreign Minister for bilateral talks on 18 November 2022. Both Ministers reviewed the current state of bilateral relations and discussed regional and international issues of mutual interest. Discussion between the two sides touched upon extending humanitarian & developmental support to Syria, capacity building of Syrian youth and collaboration in sectors like fertilizers, pharmaceuticals, IT, etc.

3. During the visit, Dr. Mekdad called on Hon’ble Vice President Shri Jagdeep Dhankhar, interacted with the Indian business community at Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), addressed a gathering at the Manohar Parrikar Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses (MP IDSA). He will also visit the Centre of Excellence of NASSCOM (National Association of Software and Service Companies) in Gurugram tomorrow.

4. India over the years has been extending humanitarian, technical and developmental assistance to Syria through bilateral and multilateral channels. Consignments of food and medicines have been supplied to Syria from time to time, including during the pandemic. India has offered Lines of Credit worth USD 280 million to Syria for building a power plant and a steel plant in the country. Two Artificial Limb Fitment Camps (Jaipur Foot) have been organized in Syria in December 2020 and recently in October-November 2022. A Next-Gen Centre for Information Technology was set up in Damascus in October 2021. About 1500 scholarships have been provided to Syrian students to study in India in diverse streams, including 200 scholarships in the current academic year.

5. The visit of Dr. Fayssal Mekdad, Minister of Foreign Affairs & Expatriates of the Syrian Arab Republic to India has provided further impetus to the bilateral relations between the two countries. Source: Ministry of External Affairs, India.


Visit of Foreign Minister of the United Arab Emirates to India, 21 November 2022.

His Highness Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of the United Arab Emirates, is paying an official visit to India from November 21-22, 2022. He will be accompanied by a senior-level delegation. During the visit, His Highness Sheikh Abdullah will hold talks with External Affairs Minister Dr. S. Jaishankar. The visit will be part of regular consultations between the two countries on bilateral as well as global issues of mutual interest.

Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi had visited the UAE on June 28, 2022 during which he met His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan. External Affairs Minister had visited UAE on August 31- September 2, 2022 to co-chair the 14th Joint Commission Meeting and the 3rd Strategic Dialogue with UAE Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed. Source: Ministry of External Affairs, India.

External Affairs Minister meets Foreign Minister of UAE, 22 November 2022.

External Affairs Minister, Dr. S Jaishankar met Foreign Minister of UAE, His Highness Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan today at Hyderabad House. The meeting was also attended by UAE MOS for International Cooperation, H.E. Ms. Reem Al Hashimy and Foreign Secretary, Shri Vinay Kwatra. EAM hosted a lunch in the honour of UAE FM and accompanying delegation.

2. EAM and UAE FM reviewed the continuous progress in bilateral relations across different domains, since the 14th Joint Commission Meeting held by them in September 2022. They appreciated the progress in bilateral relationship, especially in trade, investment, consular matters, education and food security.

3. Both Ministers noted that bilateral trade has shown appreciable growth under the CEPA Agreement which came into force on May 1, 2022. India’s exports to UAE between April-September 2022 were about USD 16 billion which was an increase of 24% y-to-y while India’s imports increased 38% to reach USD 28.4 billion in the same time period.

4. On food security cooperation under I2U2, a delegation led by CEO of ADQ visited India in October 2022 to take discussions forward with different stakeholders. IIT Delhi has held meetings with its Abu Dhabi partner, ADEK for establishing IIT Delhi campus in Abu Dhabi. The meetings of Joint Committee on Consular Affairs and JWG on Manpower were held in October and November 2022.

5. Both sides have also taken forward their discussions on other areas of cooperation including energy, healthcare, defence, space, climate change, skills, fin-tech and startups. CIM and ADIA Chairman held a successful meeting of the High Level Task Force on Investments in October 2022 in which the entire range of trade and investment cooperation was discussed.

6. Both Ministers also exchanged views on the global situation and various regional hotspots as well as the cooperation between the two countries in UN Security Council. Source: Ministry of External Affairs, India.

Envoys of five nations present credentials to President of India, 28 November 2022.

The President of India, Smt Droupadi Murmu accepted credentials from the High Commissioners/Ambassadors of Bangladesh, Maldives, United Arab Emirates, Latvia and Japan at a ceremony held at Rashtrapati Bhavan today (November 28, 2022). Those who presented their credentials were:

3. H.E. Dr Abdulnasser Jamal Hussain Mohammed Alshaali, Ambassador of the United Arab Emirates;

Source: Press Information Bureau.

India supports UAE’s proposal to include digitization in IMO Strategic Plan, 30 November 2022.

During the ongoing 128th Session of the Council of International Maritime Organisation (IMO) being held at London Dr. Sanjeev Ranjan, Secretary Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways (MoPSW) said, ‘India supports UAE’s proposal to include the element of digitization in the next Strategic Plan as well as the adoption of a maritime single window system as a part of the digitization initiative, since it will help in resolving the regulatory bottlenecks faced in the maritime industry. Time bound action plans for digitization should be part of the IMO strategic directions’.

Dr. Sanjeev Ranjan, further emphasized on India’s statement at COP 27 that the journey towards a planet safe for humanity is a collective journey to be undertaken with equity with climate justice as our guiding principles. He also put across India’s stand that decarbonization and funding for the same may be included as a separate strategic direction with the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities (CBDR-RC) as its cornerstone for the way forward.

India appreciates the proposal of UAE on ‘Capacity-Building Decade 2021-2030’ strategy including the concept of ‘no one should be left behind’. India has noted that this element does not appear to be comprehensively absorbed within the ambition of the 8 strategic directions under the existing Strategic Plan. India, therefore, considers this aspect as crucial for the effective usage of financial and technical resources available with IMO through Technical Cooperation Committee’s work to assist developing states.

IMO is working to ensure shipping can embrace the digital revolution – while ensuring safety, boosting environmental protection and managing cyber security risks. Cooperation between all relevant stakeholders, from shipping, ports and logistics, will be vital to drive the digitalization of shipping, enhance its efficiency and sustainability, and therefore facilitating trade and fostering economic prosperity. Source: Press Information Bureau.


India-Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) decide to pursue resumption of Free Trade Agreement (FTA) Negotiations, 25 November 2022.

Shri Piyush Goyal, Minister of Commerce and Industry, Consumer Affairs, Food, and Public Distribution and Textiles, Government of India, and His Excellency Dr. Nayef Falah M. Al-Hajraf, Secretary General, Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), held a Joint Press Conference, in New Delhi today, to announce the intent to pursue negotiations on the India-GCC FTA.

With forward-looking and solution-oriented deliberations, bilateral engagements witnessed significant progress on all matters of mutual interest across the entire gamut of bilateral economic relations between India and the GCC nations.

Both sides agreed to expedite conclusion of the requisite legal and technical requirements for formal resumption of the FTA negotiations. The FTA is envisaged to be a modern, comprehensive Agreement with substantial coverage of goods and services. Both sides emphasized that the FTA will create new jobs, raise living standards, and provide wider social and economic opportunities in India and all the GCC countries. Both sides agreed to significantly expand and diversify the trade basket in line with the enormous potential that exists on account of the complementary business and economic ecosystems of India and the GCC.

It may be noted that the GCC is currently India’s largest trading partner bloc with bilateral trade in FY 2021-22 valued at over USD 154 billion with exports valued at approximately USD 44 billion and imports of around USD 110 billion (non-oil exports of USD 33.8 Billion and non-oil imports of USD 37.2 Billion). Bilateral trade in services between India and the GCC was valued at around USD 14 billion in FY 2021-22, with exports valued at USD 5.5 Billion and imports at USD 8.3 Billion.

GCC countries contribute almost 35% of India’s oil imports and 70% of gas imports. India’s overall crude oil imports from the GCC in 2021-22 were about $48 billion, while LNG and LPG imports in 2021-22 were about $21 billion. Investments from the GCC in India are currently valued at over USD 18 billion. Source: Press Information Bureau.


UNSC briefing on Syria (Chemical Weapons), Remarks by Ambassador Ruchira Kamboj, Permanent Representative of India to the UN, 7 November 2022.

Thank you, Mr. President. We thank Under Secretary General and High Representative for Disarmament Affairs Ms. Izumi Nakamitsu for the update.

2. The Council had a meeting on this topic just a few days back. We believe discussion on Syria Chemical Weapons should reflect progress on the ground, which unfortunately remains at a standstill for several months. As a result, we often repeat our well-known stated positions.

3. Throughout our present term on the Council, we have encouraged sustained engagement between Syria and the OPCW Technical Secretariat to resolve all outstanding issues. In this regard, we appreciate the recent communication between the focal points of Syria and Technical Secretariat regarding a possible meeting ahead.

4. India attaches high importance to the Chemical Weapons Convention and stands for its full, effective, and non-discriminatory implementation. India is against the use of chemical weapons by anybody, anywhere, at any time and under any circumstances. India has consistently maintained that any investigation into the use of chemical weapons must be impartial, credible and objective.

5. We have repeatedly cautioned against the possibility of terrorist entities and individuals gaining access to chemical weapons, including in the region. Therefore, any allegation of use of chemical weapons needs to be dealt with utmost attention.

6. To conclude, India continues to believe that progress on other tracks would also help in facilitating overall political peace process in Syria, as advocated in UNSCR 2254.

I thank you, Mr. President. Source: Permanent Mission of India to the UN.

UNSC Briefing and Consultations on the United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL), India Statement, 15 November 2022.

Mr. President, I would like to thank SRSG Abdoulaye Bathily for his briefing today.

2. We have been meeting on a monthly basis to hear updates from the SRSG. However, it is a matter of concern that political stalemate continues and there is still no agreement between various parties on the Constitutional basis for holding elections in Libya. The continued political stalemate could pose the risk of undermining the gains made in Libya since the signing of the Ceasefire Agreement in October 2020. The immediate priority, therefore, is to resolve all outstanding issues in arriving at a Constitutional basis for holding Presidential and Parliamentary elections. Holding elections at the earliest in a free, fair, inclusive, and credible manner is an urgent imperative. 

3. Frequent mobilizations of armed groups and clashes between them bring into focus the dangers posed by the continued presence of foreign forces and mercenaries in Libya. Their presence in Libya is a violation of the Libyan Ceasefire Agreement of 2020 and goes against the pronouncements of the Security Council. Violations of Security Council resolutions, especially its provisions on arms embargo, are continuing with disregard for peace and stability in Libya and the region.

4. In this regard, the Panel of Experts assisting the Libya Sanctions Committee has noted, “the remainder of the training provided by Turkey to the Government of National Unity Affiliated Forces is military or naval in nature and thus a violation of Paragraph 9 of UN Security Council Resolution 1970 (2011)”. In view of this, we have noted yet another military agreement signed by Turkey on 25 October. We would request the SRSG to examine whether this action by Turkey violates Paragraph 9 of UNSCR 1970 and inform the Council accordingly.

5. We are also concerned at the resurgence of terrorist activity in Libya, and we reiterate that terrorist groups and affiliated entities must not be allowed to operate unchallenged in Libya. Terrorism emanating from Libya is bound to have cascading effects in the Sahel region and it is therefore important for the international community to address it, at this stage itself, so as to avoid its collateral consequences on the wider African continent.

Mr. President,

6. The political process in Libya should be fully Libyan-led and Libyan-owned with no imposition or external interference. India for its part remains committed to supporting Libya and the Libyan people in their endeavour to seek lasting peace and stability.

I thank you. Source: Permanent Mission of India to the UN.

UNSC meeting on Yemen, Remarks by Ambassador Ruchira Kamboj, Permanent Representative of India to the UN, 22 November 2022.

Thank you, Mr. President. I thank Special Envoy Hans Grundberg for his briefing. We recognise his ongoing efforts to resume the truce and bring the Yemeni parties back to dialogue.

2. I also thank Reena Ghelani, OCHA Director of Operations for her briefing. We appreciate the important contribution of OCHA, the humanitarian community and aid workers in Yemen in delivering life-saving humanitarian assistance to the people of Yemen.

Mr. President,

3. Yemen is at the cross-roads. One path leads to the peaceful resolution of the conflict and the other leads to the resumption of active hostilities, which will only exacerbate the suffering of the Yemeni people.

4. The choice is clearly for the parties to the conflict to make. We urge them to embrace the path towards peace – by shedding the military approach and by extending and expanding the truce into a comprehensive nationwide ceasefire. The focus should be on cooperative and confidence-building measures to alleviate the lives of the Yemeni people and eventually by starting an inclusive political dialogue to end the conflict.

5. In this regard, we are concerned by the actions of Ansarallah and condemn their attacks on the ports and shipping vessels in Yemen and also their threats to the shipping vessels travelling in and out of Yemen. The use of sophisticated missiles and drones in these attacks raises questions over the implementation of the targeted arms embargo established by this Council. I reiterate India’s call for the strict implementation of the arms embargo to effectively eliminate such threats in the future.

6. These attacks, which have particularly targeted the oil sector, will have severe consequences for the already fragile economy of Yemen. Such actions can also turn the Gulf of Aden and the Red Sea into a potential conflict zone, thereby destabilising the maritime security of the region.

7. On the humanitarian side, two wheat shipments of almost 85,000 Metric Tons (MTs) have departed for Yemen under the Black Sea Grain initiative within the last 30 days. We welcome this development and hope that this important initiative would continue to benefit Yemen.

8. India has also taken steps to address food security in Yemen by prioritising wheat exports to the country. Despite our national regulations on wheat exports, we have continued to export wheat to Yemen to mitigate the adverse impact of supply changes in the global commodity markets. We remain committed to do so in future as well.

Mr. President,

9. Let me conclude by calling upon all parties to engage constructively with the Special Envoy in his efforts to renew the truce and seek a political solution to the conflict. This Council should send a strong and clear signal to anyone, who stands in the way of these efforts.

Thank you! Source: Permanent Mission of India to the UN.

UNSC meeting on the Question of Palestine, Remarks by Ambassador Ruchira Kamboj, Permanent Representative of India to the UN, 28 November 2022.

Thank you, Mr. President. I thank UN Special Coordinator Tor Wennesland for his briefing.

2. We condemn the twin terror attacks that took place in Jerusalem on November 23. Our condolences to the victim's family and we wish the injured a speedy recovery. Terrorism is a global threat and only a unified and zero-tolerance approach to terrorism can eventually defeat it.

3. India has emphasized that only a negotiated two-State solution leading to establishing a sovereign, independent and viable State of Palestine, taking into consideration Israel’s legitimate security concerns, can deliver lasting peace. In this regard, India continues to reiterate the need for an early resumption of direct peace negotiations between the parties on all final status issues.

3. The absence of such negotiations and the lack of a clear political horizon for the peaceful resolution of the conflict has consequences for both Israel and Palestine.  It risks the recurrence of the cycle of violence, which will only increase the number of civilian casualties on both sides. All parties must protect civilians, especially women and children.

4. We urge the parties to cease violence and avoid unilateral actions on the ground, which undercut the viability of the two-State solution. This will help in bridging the trust deficit between the parties.

5. On our part, India remains committed to supporting all efforts to resume direct negotiations between the Israelis and the Palestinians to achieve a two-State solution. On the occasion of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, the Prime Minister of India Shri Narendra Modi extended his best wishes to the people of Palestine in their endeavour for statehood, peace and prosperity. In his message, he reaffirmed our long-standing relationship with the Palestinian people, based on deep-rooted historical and people-to-people ties.

Thank you! Source: Permanent Mission of India to the UN.

UNSC Briefing on Syria political-humanitarian situation, Remarks by Ambassador Ruchira Kamboj, Permanent Representative of India to the UN, 29 November 2022.

Mr. President, Let me begin by thanking the briefers, Special Envoy Geir Pedersen and Under Secretary General Martin Griffiths for their briefings.

2. India supports UN Secretary General’s call on all parties to exercise maximum restraint and avoid any further escalation. We must attach utmost importance to maintaining the ceasefire agreed between the various parties in March 2020 and reiterate utmost respect for Syria's sovereignty and territorial integrity.

3. We are gravely concerned about reports of the impact of increase in hostilities against civilians, including in IDP (Internally Displaced Person) camps in Idlib. We emphasize that civilian and civilian infrastructure must continue to be protected in accordance with international law.  Such acts of violence by neighbouring states set us back on the pursuit for a nationwide ceasefire, as mandated by UNSCR 2254, that was unanimously adopted by this Council in 2015.

Mr. President,

4. India continues to support the Special Envoy’s ‘step by step’ approach; for in our view his efforts towards making incremental progress by engaging with all parties is the only way to end this protracted conflict, which is now in its twelfth year. To this end, we support Special Envoys engagements with Damascus and the Astana Guarantors as well as with other regional partners like UAE, Lebanon and Jordan. We need to continue to build bridges of trust between all sides.

5. On the humanitarian side, as Syria stares at a long and hard winter, the outbreak of cholera has further added to the woes of Syrian people. We continue to urge for greater donor support for the humanitarian resource plan for Syria, which remains chronically under-funded and woefully inadequate to meet the humanitarian needs of over 15 million Syrians. We continue to call on OCHA to further increase the focus on early recovery projects including power, water and health services, which are also meant to generate livelihood opportunities and support for the most vulnerable sections of the Syrian population including the elderly, women and children. We must not politicize humanitarian development.

6. We also look forward to the discussion on the Secretary General’s report on humanitarian assistance to Syria due in December.

Mr. President,

7. While it is true that all modalities of aid delivery must be explored for delivering aid to Syria, we continue to believe that the cross-border aid mechanism cannot be allowed to become an end in itself. We call upon OCHA and other UN agencies to continue to hold constructive engagement with Damascus for ensuring greater efficacy for cross-line aid operations.

8. As the Chair of the Counter Terrorism Committee of this Council, we continue to be concerned by reports of resurgence of ISIS in the region and continue to call on all sides to tackle the menace of terrorism with utmost seriousness.

9. Finally, Mr. President, let me conclude with a brief report on the recent successful visit by Syria’s Foreign Minister to India. During the visit, discussions focused on reconstruction of Syria, including through extending humanitarian assistance and developmental support, capacity building for Syrian youth as well as collaboration in sectors like renewable energy, IT and pharmaceuticals. India has already established a Next Generation Centre for Information-Technology in Damascus last October and provided over 1500 individual scholarships including about 200 scholarships this year for Syrian students to continue their studies in India in diverse streams. We have recently organized artificial limb fitment camps (Jaipur Foot) in Damascus for the benefit of the Syrian population. India has offered lines of credit worth USD 280 million for building a power plant and a steel plant in the country.

10. To conclude, we stand ready to do more in the coming to help our Syrian brothers and sisters in their hour of need. India’s continued support to Syria in its endeavour for seeking lasting peace and stability remains steadfast and unwavering.

I thank you. Source: Permanent Mission of India to the UN.

As part of the policy, the MEI@ND standardizes spellings and date format to make the text uniformly accessible and stylistically consistent. The views expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views/positions of the MEI@ND. Editor, MEI@ND P R Kumaraswamy