India-Mongolia Buddhism bonding set to get economic ballast

Flag-Pins-India-MongoliaThe centuries-old Buddhism bonding between India and Mongolia is set to be transformed into a vibrant contemporary relationship during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s maiden visit to Mongolia, the repository of mineral wealth and an emerging Central Asian country trying to carve its place in the region.

Ahead of his trip to the strategically located country, the first ever prime ministerial visit from India to the land-locked Central Asian country, Mr Modi has struck the right notes, saying Mongolia is India’s spiritual friend and invoked 2700 years of Buddhist connections between the two countries.

“Democracy and Buddhism bind India with Mongolia – our spiritual friend. Looking forward to more trade and investment ties with Mongolia,” Mr Modi said on his twitter post May 6. Mr Modi will address the Mongolian Parliament, the Great Khural, on May 17. “Honoured to get the opportunity to address the Great Khural on 17th May. I reassure India’s continued support in all areas to Mongolia.”

Scaling up economic ties, leveraging Indian expertise for the development of Mongolia, capacity building and enhanced defence ties will be key focus areas of discussions between Mr Modi and Mongolian leaders.

The prime ministerial visit will mark the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between India and Mongolia.

India was the first country outside the Socialist bloc to have established diplomatic relations with Ulan Bator. India also helped Mongolia gets its UN and NAM membership.

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