Sun, Dec 4, 2016 | updated 07:29 AM IST

Development, economic ties an essential part of India, Mozambique relationship: PM Modi

Updated: Jul 07, 2016 19:24 IST

Maputo (Mozambique), July 7 (ANI): Applauding Mozambique as one of the fastest growing economies of the world in recent decades, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday said as two developing countries, both India and Mozambique are facing similar challenges, and thus, development and economic partnership are an essential part of the relationship between the two nations.

"Today, we applaud Mozambique as one of the fastest growing economies of the world in recent decades. Excellency, as two developing countries we face similar challenges. Our development and economic partnership, therefore, has been an essential part of our relationship," said the Prime Minister at a banquet hosted by Mozambican President Filipe Nyusi.

"Our trade and investment ties have particularly flourished in recent years. We want to build further on it. For this, India remains ready and committed to share its experiences, technology, capacity and concessional credit with Mozambique, in line with your priorities," said Prime Minister Modi who arrived here in the evening.

Emphasising that the relationship between our countries is not new, Prime Minister Modi said, "Thousands of Indian-origin people call Mozambique their home. I am told that most of the Siddi community that resides in parts of India is known to trace its ancestry to Mozambique. These communities are a living testimony to age old links that have connected our people, their ideas and traditions, and culture and commerce."

Noting that both the countries suffered under the colonial rule, the Prime Minister said, "In the case of Mozambique, the struggle was much longer. Independent India was one of the leading advocates of Mozambican freedom from colonial rule. We were proud to see Mozambique join the ranks of free nations in 1975."

"Last year marked the 40th anniversary of Mozambican independence and of establishment of our diplomatic ties. It also saw a level of interaction between our nations, never seen before. Its high point was your own State Visit to India in August 2015. Later, your Prime Minister honoured us with his presence during the third edition of the India-Africa Forum Summit. Excellency, I am aware that I am the first Indian Prime Minister to visit Mozambique in 34 years. This gap should never have been so long. And, I am confident that it will not be so in future," the Prime Minister noted.

"With these words, Excellencies, Ladies & Gentlemen, please join me in raising a toast: to the health, happiness and well-being of His Excellency, President Filipe Jacinto Nyusi; to lasting peace, progress and prosperity among the people of Mozambique; and to strong bonds of friendship and cooperation between India and Mozambique," he added.

Earlier, Prime Minister Modi said India and Mozambique recognise terrorism as the gravest security threat facing the world today, and thus, both the nations have agreed to strengthen their defence and security relationship.

Prime Minister Modi and President Nyusi also witnessed the signing of three agreements on reduction of drug trafficking and psychotropic substances and related materials, cooperation in the field of youth affairs and sports, and long term agreement for purchase of pulses.

The three Memoranda of Understanding (MoU) were signed between secretary of economic relations in the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) Amar Sinha and Minister of Finance of Mozambique. (ANI)