New Delhi: – India Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman held telephonic discussions. The leaders expressed satisfaction over the increasing cooperation between the two countries. Prime Minister Modi and the Saudi Crown Prince concurred that this cooperation should be made more comprehensive. Along with this, both the leaders agreed on cooperating against the Coronavirus crisis. In 2019, India and Saudi Arabia had formed the Bilateral Strategic Partnership Council for strategic partnerships between the two countries. Prime Minister Modi and Crown Prince Salman reviewed this council’s progress, set up to provide impetus to the bilateral cooperation in trade, investment, and defence. At the same time, the Indian Prime Minister pointed to the opportunities created for Saudi Arabian investors in the Indian economy, which is gaining momentum.
Trade between India and Saudi Arabia has been increasing, and the trade between the two countries reached USD 34 billion in 2019-20 from USD 27 billion in 2018-19. It is claimed that this bilateral trade will get further momentum in the years to come. Prime Minister Modi and Crown Prince Salman expressed satisfaction over this increasing cooperation. Both the leaders also agreed to increase bilateral cooperation regarding the Coronavirus pandemic.
The Indian Prime Minister and Saudi Crown Prince also discussed regional and international issues and mutual interests. Prime Minister Modi and Crown Prince Salman stressed increasing the dialogue between the citizens of the two countries to make the bonds stronger. The Prime Minister’s office informed through a statement released that Prime Minister Modi extended an invitation to Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman to visit India.
Currently, there are major upheavals in the Gulf sector. Saudi Arabia and its Arab allies are strengthening their ties with Israel. A country like the United Arab Emirates has attached importance to these relations with Israel, and it is claimed that Saudi Arabia is behind this. At the same time, Iran is claiming that this cooperation is against it. Whereas it is being claimed that US President Biden is watching the developing relations between Israel and Saudi Arabia and its allies with suspicion.
In this scenario, the discussions between the Indian Prime Minister and the Saudi Crown Prince become significant. Indian relations with Saudi Arabia are becoming stronger, and the Indian Chief of Army Staff had visited Saudi Arabia a few months ago. The navies of India and Saudi Arabia were scheduled to hold joint exercises. But the exercises had to be postponed due to the Coronavirus pandemic. Pakistani analysts are expressing concerns that this developing cooperation between India and Saudi Arabia will prove lethal for Pakistan.