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India-Oman looking at early conclusion of CEPA

Bilateral trade between the two nations has doubled from USD 5.4 billion in 2020-21 to USD 12.3 billion in 2022-23.

NEW DELHI: India and Oman reviewed the entire range of bilateral relations with each other during the ongoing state visit of the Sultan of Oman, Haitham bin Tarik, to India. Talks ranged from concluding the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) to furthering partnership in defence, trade and more.

“We had an excellent meeting and reviewed the entire range of our bilateral ties and we discussed ways to deepen cooperation in defence, commerce, culture, and innovation,’’ said Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who visited Oman in 2018.

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This is the first state visit from the Sultan of Oman after a gap of 26 years.

Sultan of Oman was accompanied by a high-level delegation which comprised his deputy Prime Minister for Defence, seven cabinet ministers and three vice ministers.

“India and Oman are strategic partners, at one end of the Arabian Sea is India and the other end Oman. Trade ties, culture, and common priorities bind our two nations and today we are adopting a new `India-Oman Joint Vision- A Partnership for future.’ There are ten concrete action points that have been agreed upon and this will strengthen our ties further. Besides, we also spoke about the ongoing talks of a Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) with Oman. Two rounds have been completed and consensus has been arrived at important issues,’’ said PM Modi adding that there was optimism that this agreement would be signed soon.

Both leaders held discussions on security and political cooperation, defence, trade, energy, renewables, healthcare, and education.

Meanwhile, the India-Oman Joint Vision identified areas like maritime cooperation, connectivity, energy security, green energy, space, technologies, digital payments, financial cooperation, trade, investment, health, tourism, agriculture and food security amongst other things.

Oman was invited as a guest by India during its recently concluded G20 Presidency. There are over 700,000 Indians working in Oman.

Meanwhile, both leaders condemned terrorism and emphasised the need for all countries to abide by international law, respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all nations, refrain from interfering in the internal affairs of other countries and resolve conflicts through dialogue and diplomacy.

 

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