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PM’s Statement to the media in Mauritius

Prime Minister Sir Aneerood Jugnauth, members of the media

I sincerely thank you for your warm welcome and the extraordinary hospitality.

I am very grateful to you and the people of Mauritius for invitation as the Chief Guest of the National Day tomorrow.

It is an honour for the 1.25 billion people of India. They deeply value this relationship.

It flows from the depth of our hearts; and, from the deepest bonds of kinship.

We always stand in solidarity and support for each other. It comes naturally to us from our friendship, our shared values, and our common regional and global interests.

We are partners in our economic progress.

We have built a relationship of matchless strength and character.

It is no surprise that Prime Minister and I had an excellent meeting. The outcomes and decisions today are truly significant.

We discussed our shared interests in a safe and secure Indian Ocean and a stable and prosperous Indian Ocean Region. We value the leadership by Mauritius in this area.

Today, I was pleased to offer a concessional line of credit of 500 million U.S. dollars for civil infrastructure projects for Mauritius.

We also intend to quickly build the petroleum storage and bunkering facility in Mauritius. This will not only benefit Mauritius, but also reinforce its role as a regional hub.

A decade ago, India helped build the first cyber city in Mauritius. Its remarkable success reflects the strategic foresight of Mauritius in diversifying its economy. Today, we have offered support for construction of the second cyber city.

Our agreement today on the development of Agalega Island is a major stride in our cooperation in infrastructure sector. It demonstrates the depth of our mutual confidence.

Mauritius has shown great vision in the development of its Ocean Economy.

Our agreement on cooperation in the Ocean Economy is an important step in our scientific and economic partnership.

This will improve our understanding of marine ecology.

It will help us to develop new areas of ocean economy and, at the same time, follow more sustainable practices in using our blue assets.

Over the past few years, we have discussed revision of our Double Taxation Avoidance Convention. This is based on our shared objective of preventing abuse of the Convention, while enabling Mauritius to benefit fully from this arrangement. We have agreed to continue this discussion.

However, I have assured Prime Minister that we will do nothing to harm this critical sector of one of our strongest strategic partners in the world.

I also conveyed our deep appreciation for the support and cooperation offered by Mauritius on information exchange on taxation.

We should resume our discussions on Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement.

Prime Minister and I consider our security cooperation to be a cornerstone of our strategic partnership.

This is not only because of our responsibility to each other, but also because of our shared vision for our maritime neighbourhood.

I reiterated India’s commitment to cooperate with Mauritius in its efforts to secure its vast Exclusive Economic Zone.

We are also honoured to be the preferred partner for Mauritius in developing its security capabilities. Tomorrow, we will commission Barracuda into the service of the Coast Guard of Mauritius.

I assured Prime Minister of timely support in all areas, including delivery of other ships and equipment that Mauritius has ordered from India.

We agreed that broader regional cooperation will enhance peace and prosperity in our maritime region.

In this context, I thanked Prime Minister for the leadership shown by Mauritius in the Indian Ocean Rim Association and for hosting its Secretariat.

We are grateful for the support Mauritius has always given us in international forums. It gives India strength to speak on issues of common interests.

The adoption of June 21 as International Day of Yoga by the United Nations General Assembly by record sponsorship in record time is a tribute to our shared heritage.

We had strong meeting of minds on climate change. We are both committed to strong national action. We will also strengthen our bilateral cooperation and global partnership on addressing its challenges.

People-to-people contacts constitute the very foundation of our relationship.

We will continue to nurture it with highest level of priority. For Mauritius, we have decided to waive the fee or the Electronic Travel Authorisation.

We have also decided to launch a multi-disciplinary youth forum. This will connect our youth more; and, it will sow the seeds of strong partnerships in the future.

I am really grateful to Prime Minister Sir Jugnauth and his team for very productive and substantive meeting.

I am excited about the National Day celebrations, the privilege of speaking to the National Assembly and other very special events tomorrow.

To me, more than anything else, they reflect the richness of our relationship.

Once again, thank you, Mr. Prime Minister.

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