India’s External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj will undertake an official visit to Qatar from Sunday to Tuesday as part of a tour of the region which includes Kuwait, the embassy announced Friday.
The Minister will be accompanied by a high-level delegation from the Ministry of External Affairs, New Delhi. During her visit to Qatar, Swaraj would interact with Qatar’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs HE Sheikh Mohamed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani.
The Indian Minister will also call on His Highness the Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, according to a statement issued by the embassy. During the visit, the countries are also expected to sign important agreements. The Minister will also have an interactive session with the members of the Indian community on Monday.
This will be Swaraj's first visit as India’s External Affairs Minister to Qatar. In August, HE Sheikh Mohamed visited New Delhi. The visit of the Indian Minister is expected to provide an opportunity to hold an in-depth discussion between the two countries on various global, regional and bilateral issues.
India and Qatar share a historic and multi-dimensional relationship. The bilateral visit of His Highness the Amir in March 2015 and HE the Prime Minister to India in December 2016 and that of the visit of the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Qatar in June 2016 have further boosted the traditionally cordial and close ties between the two countries.
“Qatar hosts about 700,000 Indians who form the largest expatriate community in the country. Qatar is a reliable energy partner, accounting for more than 50% of India's natural gas imports. The bilateral trade between the two countries during 2017-18 was $9.9bn. India's exports to Qatar during this period reached $1.5bn registering an increase of 87% over the previous year,” the statement added.
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