Defence ties among 7 India-Portugal pacts

Defence ties among 7 India-Portugal pacts

India and Portugal on Saturday inked seven pacts, including one for defence cooperation, as Prime Minister Narendra Modi hosted his counterpart from the South European country, António Luís Santos da Costa.

The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) inked for India-Portugal defence cooperation envisages high-level visits, working-level exchanges, education and training exchanges, exchange of views on issues of mutual interests like security challenges, maritime security and United Nations peacekeeping operations. The MoU also provides for cooperation between defence industries of the two nations.

“The MoU on Defence cooperation signed on Saturday will help us harness our respective strengths in this field for mutual benefit,” Modi said in a statement after his meeting with Costa in Hyderabad House.

Modi and Costa called for eliminating terrorist safe havens and infrastructure, disrupting terrorist networks and their financing. “Recognizing the importance of the central role of UN in combating terrorism, they exhorted the international community to effectively implement the measures enumerated by the 1267 UN Sanctions Committee,” noted a joint statement issued after the meeting of the two Prime Ministers.

This comes a week after China blocked the latest attempt of India to impose UN sanctions on Pakistan-based terrorist leader Masood Azhar.

The other MoUs inked on Saturday sought to step up bilateral cooperation in Information Technology and Electronics, Agriculture and Allied Sectors, Renewable Energy, Marine Research and Resources. An MoU for establishment of an ICCR (Indian Council of Cultural Relations) chair of Indian Studies in University of Lisbon was also signed. The two nations inked an agreement on visa waiver for holders of diplomatic passports too.

Modi and Costa also issued an India-Portugal Joint Declaration on Cooperation in Third Countries.

Modi also invited Portuguese companies to take advantage of his government’s ‘Make in India’ initiative.

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