India, Mexico look to strengthen bilateral ties

 

Swaraj-Salinas

With a view to enhance cooperation in key areas of trade and energy, Mexican Foreign Minister Claudia Ruiz Massieu Salinas held a meeting with External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj to review bilateral ties and boost trade between the two countries.

Ms Claudia Ruiz Massieu Salinas, was on a two day visit to India on 11-12 March. “During their meeting, the external affairs minister and the Mexican foreign minister undertook a comprehensive review of the entire gamut of bilateral relations including political, commercial and trade, financial, technical and other areas to further broaden and strengthen cooperation,” External Affairs Ministry said in a statement.

Reviewing the comprehensive bilateral ties between India and Mexico, the foreign ministers’ of both the countries explored the possibility of elevating the relationship to a new level.

Mexico is the world’s 14th largest economy and India is looking to rope the Latin American country in its ‘Make in India’ programme. The bilateral trade between India and Mexico stands at $6.25 billion, which primarily comprised of oil imports by India. Mexico is the largest Latin American investor in India with a portfolio of about $800 million. Around 60 Indian firms are operating in Mexico with investments of around $2 billion.

Mexico is also rich in hydrocarbons and ranks among the top 10 oil producing countries of the world. India is the third largest crude oil importer from Mexico. The Latin American country is crucial for India’s energy security. Mrs. Swaraj and Ms. Salinas agreed to exchange high-level visits in the near future and also discussed important regional and international issues of mutual interest.

“The two ministers discussed ways and means of elevating the special relationship between India and Mexico,” External Affairs ministry spokesman Vikas Swarup said. He also said that both the countries have agreed to hold the next meeting of the joint commission in Mexico later in 2016. India sought   Mexico’s participation in its flagship programmers like make in India, Skill India and Smart Cities.

“The external affairs minister also mentioned that we would like Mexico’s participation in ensuring value addition and greater use of technology in our agriculture and agro-processing sectors,” Mr Swarup said. Praising India’s handling of its Diaspora, Ms Salinas said that  India has the largest diaspora and Mexico the second largest, and Mexico can learn a lot from India in dealing with the diaspora.

The Mexican foreign minister also undertook a short ride in the Delhi Metro and inaugurated a photographic exhibition called ‘Mexico Is’ at the Rajiv Chowk metro station.