fbpx Skip to content

India and Saudi Arabia: A Crucial Strategic Partnership

India and Saudi Arabia: A Crucial Strategic Partnership

Prime Minister Narendra Modi with Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince and Prime Minister Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud
Prime Minister Narendra Modi with Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince and Prime Minister Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud before a meeting at the Hyderabad House, in New Delhi on September 11, 2023. | Photo Credit: PTI

In a significant development, Prime Minister Narendra Modi reaffirmed Saudi Arabia’s pivotal role as “one of the most important strategic partners of India” during the state visit of Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman of Saudi Arabia on September 11. The visit marked a pivotal moment in the bilateral relations between these two nations, underscoring their shared commitment to enhancing cooperation and addressing regional stability.

Strengthening Strategic Ties

Prime Minister Modi’s declaration of Saudi Arabia’s strategic importance highlights the mutual recognition of their roles as two of the world’s fastest-growing countries. Their partnership is seen as vital not only for the stability of the region but also for fostering economic growth, particularly in sectors such as energy, digitization, and transportation.

This affirmation of strategic partnership builds upon the foundation laid by the India-Saudi Strategic Partnership Council (SPC), established in October 2019, and underscores the commitment of both nations to deepen their collaboration.

The Role of the India-Middle East-EU Transport Corridor

The timing of this visit holds special significance as it comes just days after the launch of the India-Middle East-EU transport corridor, a historic initiative aimed at connecting India, West Asia, and Europe through an economic corridor. This corridor is poised to stimulate economic growth, bolster the energy sector, and drive digitization, further cementing the ties between India and Saudi Arabia.

Areas of Cooperation

During the visit, discussions encompassed a wide range of areas for potential cooperation. These included defense, energy, security, education, technology, transportation, healthcare, tourism, culture, space, and semiconductors. The breadth of these discussions reflects the comprehensive nature of the partnership.

The West Coast Refinery Project

One noteworthy development is the commitment to expedite the West Coast refinery project, a trilateral venture involving ARAMCO, ADNOC, and an Indian company, with an initial investment of $50 billion. The establishment of a joint task force to facilitate the channeling of the promised $100 billion investment from Saudi Arabia is a significant step forward. This commitment underscores the seriousness of both nations in bolstering energy ties and fostering a comprehensive energy partnership.

Bilateral Agreements

During the visit, eight agreements were signed, covering various domains. These include agreements between the Central Vigilance Commission of India and the Saudi Oversight and Anti-Corruption Authority, as well as between the Saudi and Indian Exim Banks. Collaborations in the fields of education, research, and archival research were also solidified, demonstrating the breadth of engagement between the two countries.

Regional and Global Cooperation

The joint statement issued at the end of the visit highlighted Saudi Arabia’s commitment to being a reliable partner for India in the supply of crude oil. Both nations emphasized their dedication to expanding private sector involvement in investment partnerships, especially in agriculture and food industries.

On the international front, discussions included strengthening defense and anti-terrorism cooperation, with a particular focus on preventing access to “missiles and drones” for carrying out terror attacks. The joint statement also highlighted plans to enhance tourism ties, acknowledging the ongoing reforms in Saudi Arabia.

Moreover, discussions touched upon regional concerns, such as Yemen and Afghanistan. Saudi Arabia expressed gratitude to India for its humanitarian assistance to the war-affected people of Yemen and emphasized the importance of a government in Afghanistan that represents all segments of the Afghan population.

In conclusion, Prime Minister Modi’s assertion of Saudi Arabia’s strategic significance underscores the deepening ties between the two nations. This visit has not only reaffirmed their commitment to mutual cooperation but has also opened avenues for collaborative ventures that extend across various sectors, benefiting both countries and contributing to regional stability.

Source: The Hindu

More Link
What's New

Copyright © 2023 UPSC Padhai. All Rights Reserved.