Indian minister completes Latin America tour to boost economic ties

New Delhi, Jan 23 (EFE).- The Indian Minister of State for External Affairs and Culture Meenakshi Lekhi has completed a tour of four Latin American nations, mainly aimed at business and investment promotion, India’s foreign ministry reported Monday.

Over the past two weeks, Lekhi met with high-ranking officials in Cuba, Guatemala, El Salvador and Bolivia in order to reinforce India’s ties with these countries and strengthen cooperation in areas such as economy, development aid, the environment and culture.

Lekhi’s trip began in Cuba, where she addressed issues including the development of indigenous covid-19 vaccines, women empowerment, India’s willingness to strengthen cooperation in development assistance programs, and trade and investment, the ministry said in a statement.

Moreover, India is one of Cuba’s 20-odd trading partners and has invested in important credit lines dedicated to the execution of agriculture and renewable energy projects.

Lekhi’s visit to Guatemala was marked by the 50th anniversary of the establishment of the diplomatic relationship between the two nations.

The agenda included an increase in renewable energy cooperation, besides the inauguration of a warehouse for Indian companies in the Central American country in order to promote Indian exports in the region.

In El Salvador, the minister held discussions on improving trade between the two sides, in an attempt to create opportunities for Indian companies to invest in El Salvador.

Lekhi concluded her tour in Bolivia last Friday, where long-term partnership in the lithium and battery sector and cooperation in metals and minerals were some of the main points discussed with local authorities.

Besides promoting trade between the countries, investment opportunities in Bolivia for Indian companies were also discussed.

India’s trade with South American and Caribbean nations has been increasing for the past few years, in sync with the increasing visits of Indian officials to the region, which barely received New Delhi’s attention until a few years ago.

Indian exports to these countries reached their highest levels in the financial year 2021-22, amounting to about $15 billion, according to India’s Ministry of Commerce and Industry. EFE


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