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India, Mongolia agree to jointly fight terror, boost trade

Ulaanbaatar, April 25: Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Wednesday discussed terrorism with her Mongolian counterpart Damdin Tsogtbaatar and the two agreed to collaborate to confront those who design and support terror outfits. Sushma Swaraj, who arrived in the Mongolian capital here on Tuesday after wrapping up her China visit, also called upon the country’s business community to seize economic opportunities from India’s growth. She co-chaired the sixth round of the India-Mongolia Joint Consultative Committee (IMJCC), focusing on a range of issues including economic, energy, political, strategic, educational and cultural ties along with Tsogtbaatar. She is the first Indian Foreign Minister to visit Mongolia in 42 years. In 2015, Narendra Modi became the first Indian Prime Minister to visit this landlocked Asian country. It had ruffled China’s feathers.

Addressing the media here after the IMJCC meeting, Sushma Swaraj said: “We discussed global challenges affecting humanity, particularly terrorism, and agreed to collaborate bilaterally in the international arena to root out this evil.” She said India sees Mongolia as a factor of stability in East Asia, adding that the country’s social and economic development is the key to peace and prosperity in the region. India is currently helping Mongolia build its first oil refinery with a $1 billion line of credit, to reduce its dependence of neighbouring nations.
Stating that India has today emerged as one of the fastest growing large economies in the world, Sushma Swaraj said that with its rich natural resources and strong aspiration for development, Mongolia can be an important partner in India’s growth story. In Wednesday’s meeting, both sides agreed to remove institutional and logistical impediments to boost trade, tourism and people-to-people contacts. (IANS)