NEW DELHI, July 15: In an important boost to the Indian healthcare industry, India and Bahrain on Sunday agreed to make pharmaceuticals a key area of cooperation following the second High Joint Commission meeting led by External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and Bahraini Foreign Minister Shaikh Khalid Bin Ahmed Bin Mohammed Al Khalifa in Manama.
“Bahrain and India agreed to explore opportunities healthcare industry and welcomed the signing of an MoU for cooperation in the field of healthcare, which would contribute in expanding the cooperation between the two countries making pharmaceuticals a key priority area in the bilateral relations,” said a joint statement issued following the meeting.
The two sides also signed an MoU on renewable energy even as Bahrain congratulated Sushma Swaraj on launching of the International Solar Alliance (ISA) by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Launched by Modi and then French President Francois Hollande at the Paris climate summit in 2015, the ISA was conceived as a coalition of solar resource-rich countries to address their special energy needs and provide a platform to collaborate on dealing with the identified gaps through a common, agreed approach.
India and Bahrain also noted the existing potential for two-way investments and reaffirmed their desire to provide favourable environment for investments, both from public and private sectors, from the two countries, the statement said.
“Both sides agreed on the importance of regular and timely exchange of information on available investment opportunities,” it said. It said that both sides discussed in detail various aspects of bilateral relations including “ways and means to expand cooperation in different fields.
During the meeting, Bahrain Foreign Minister Shaikh Khalifa lauded the role of the Indian expatriate community’s role in his country’s development.
Bahrain is home to around 350,000 Indian nationals, the largest expatriate community in the Gulf Kingdom, and more than 3,000 Indian-owned or joint venture companies. Bilateral trade between India and Bahrain stood at over $875 million as of February this year, according to figures provided by the External Affairs Ministry. India’s total capital investment into Bahrain between January 2003 and March 2018 has been estimated at $1.69 billion. (IANS)