This will be the first visit from India at the level of Vice President to all three countries

Vice President Venkaiah Naidu will visit Gabon, Senegal and Qatar from May 30 to June 7, 2022, the Ministry of External Affairs said in a statement on Thursday.

According to the Ministry, the Vice President will be accompanied by a high-level delegation including Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare Dr. Bharati Pravin Pawar and three Members of Parliament, Sushil Kumar Modi (Rajya Sabha), Vijay Pal Singh Tomar (Rajya Sabha) and P. Raveendranath (Lok Sabha).

This will also be the first-ever high-level visit from India to Gabon and to Senegal.

The visits to Gabon and to Senegal will add momentum to India's engagement with Africa and emphasise India’s commitment to the African continent. The visit to Qatar, as both sides prepare to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations, will further enhance the bilateral ties.

A number of bilateral documents are expected to be concluded during the visit to the three countries.

During his three-day (May 30 to June 1) visit to Gabon, the Vice President will hold delegation level talks with Prime Minister Rose Christiane Ossouka Raponda. Vice President Naidu will call on President Ali Bongo Ondimba and meet other dignitaries. He will also interact with the business community in Gabon and address the Indian diaspora.

Gabon is an important partner for India. Both India and Gabon are currently serving as non-permanent members of the UNSC. Bilateral trade reached US$ 1.12 billion in 2021-22.

A number of Gabonese nationals pursue scholarship / training programmes offered by India under the Indian Technical and Economic Cooperation (ITEC) and ICCR schemes.

In the second-leg of his three-nation visit, the Vice President will land in Senegal where during his June 1 to 3 trip, he will hold delegation level talks with President Macky Sall.

The Vice President will meet President of the National Assembly Moustapha Niasse, and other dignitaries. He will also attend a business roundtable and address the Indian community.

Senegal is the current Chair of the African Union. India-Senegal bilateral trade reached US$ 1.65 billion in 2021-22. India has offered a total of 16 Lines of Credit amounting to US$ 350 million and Buyer's Credit of about US$ 305 million in various sectors.

India’s capacity building training programs under ITEC are popular in Senegal. India and Senegal are celebrating the 60th anniversary of establishment of diplomatic relations.

The Vice President will be in Qatar from June 04 to 07. During the visit, the Vice President will hold delegation-level talks with Qatar's Deputy Amir, Sheikh Abdullah Bin Hamad Al Thani, and review bilateral cooperation. The Vice President will meet several other Qatari dignitaries during this visit.

He will also address a business roundtable in Qatar. A Community Reception will be held on the occasion of the Vice President's visit, where he will address the members of the diverse Indian community in Qatar.

People-to-people contacts are at the heart of the historical relations between India and Qatar, with the latter hosting over 750,000 Indians.

The multifaceted cooperation between the two sides has witnessed significant growth in economic, energy, investment, education, defence, and cultural ties.

Bilateral trade between India and Qatar crossed $15 billion in FY 2021-22. Qatar has also committed investments of over US$ 2 billion in various Indian companies over the past two years.