Jaishankar expressed satisfaction at the bilateral cooperation between the two countries

External Affairs Minister, S Jaishankar on Saturday met Foreign Minister of Tajikistan Sirojiddin Muhriddin in New Delhi and exchanged views expanding the two countries cooperation in energy, connectivity, trade, security and capacity building.

At the invitation of External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Tajikistan Sirojiddin Muhriddin is paying an official visit to New Delhi on December 18-20.

A tweet from Jaishankar on Saturday said he held productive discussions with his friend Tajik Foreign Minister, Sirojiddin Muhriddin.

“Productive discussions with my friend, Tajik FM Sirojiddin Muhriddin. Exchanged views on expanding our bilateral cooperation in energy, connectivity, trade, security and capacity building. Valued his insights on regional developments” the EAM tweeted .

“Signed agreements on diplomatic training and program of cooperation,” Jaishankar’s tweet added.

In the opening remarks at his meeting with the Foreign Minister of Tajikistan, Jaishankar expressed satisfaction at the bilateral cooperation between the two countries and noted that a very important development partnership has been initiated.

Noting that the support for each other during Covid was very good, he recalled that ‘Made in India’ vaccines were provided to Tajikistan and “looked forward to easier travel between India and Tajikistan through recognition of our vaccine certificates.”

“As neighbours of Afghanistan, we have been very concerned at the developments there,” Jaishankar informed.

“And the participation of the Secretary of your Security Council in the Regional Security Dialogue, which we hosted in November, is something which is deeply appreciated,” he added.

The EAM also thanked the Tajik Foreign Minister for the tremendous support that he gave during the evacuation of Indians from Afghanistan in August and September, both Indians as well as some members of the Afghan minority community.

“Let me say, I am delighted to welcome you to India. As you know I was in Dushanbe three times this year, in March, in July and in September. So I am very happy that I now have an opportunity to host you,” he stated.

According to Jaishankar, during his last visit, he had the privilege of calling on Tajikistan President Rahmon and the latter’s guidance has been very useful in identifying and implementing our bilateral cooperation and also emphasized on the attention Prime Minister Narendra Modi has also given this relationship personally.

“It’s been actually a matter of satisfaction, despite the Covid, that we have still managed to meet regularly,” he said.

“Today, as I welcome you, let me congratulate you on the 30th anniversary of the independence of Tajikistan and I would also like to convey our appreciation of the organization of the SCO Council of Heads of State Summit in its 20th anniversary year again despite all the problems of the Covid,” the External Affairs Minister noted.

“But if we look at next year, 2022, I think this is a very special year for our relationship. It will be 30 years of our diplomatic ties. It’s also, we will be celebrating 75 years of India’s independence,” he further said.

“And when we look back at these 30 years, our bilateral cooperation has progressed very well and we are looking at new areas of cooperation. We have begun a very important development partnership,” Jaishankar explained.

“So, overall I think we meet at a time when our relations are very good bilaterally; where we are cooperating regionally; where we work closely in the UN and in the SCO,” he further stated.

He also thanked the visiting Tajik Foreign Minister for his decision to join the Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure, which is part of Prime Minister Modi’s vision.