India and Norway carried out a comprehensive review of their fast expanding relationship and resolved to further boost trade and investment ties.
The two sides deliberated on a range of key issues today at a virtual meeting of the India-Norway Joint Commission which was co-chaired by External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and his Norwegian counterpart Ine Eriksen Soreide.
In a statement, the Ministry of External Affairs said the two sides also hoped for an an early conclusion of the India and EFTA (European Free Trade Association) trade negotiations.
The four members of EFTA are Switzerland, Iceland, Norway and Liechtenstein.
"Both sides reaffirmed their commitment to expand the bilateral trade in order to realise the untapped potential in the commercial and economic relationship. The two ministers expressed their hope for an early conclusion of the India and EFTA trade negotiations," the MEA said.
It said Mr Jaishankar and Ine Eriksen Soreide reviewed the entire gamut of bilateral relations and expressed satisfaction over "significant progress".
"Our green, clean and human-centric partnership has an increasing relevance in the contemporary world. Appreciate the progress made in our Blue Economy and Ocean Dialogue," Mr Jaishankar tweeted.
Thank FM Ine Eriksen Søreide for a productive India-Norway Joint Commission Meeting. Our green, clean and human-centric partnership has an increasing relevance in the contemporary world. Appreciate the progress made in our Blue Economy and Ocean Dialogue. pic.twitter.com/prpgrw4gbs— Dr. S. Jaishankar (@DrSJaishankar) October 13, 2020
"They noted that the visit of Prime Minister Erna Solberg to New Delhi in January 2019 laid down a blueprint for a comprehensive partnership between India and Norway," the MEA said.
Noting that the COVID-19 has posed significant challenges to nations across the world, the ministers reiterated their commitment to cooperate closely in combating the pandemic.
"Both ministers welcomed the establishment of the global facility COVAX and the work to secure fair global access to vaccines. Both sides reaffirmed their commitment to bilateral cooperation on maternal and child health," the MEA said.
"The ministers agreed that the recovery from the COVID-19 crisis provides the opportunity to build more sustainable economies," it added.