In Saudi Arabia, Narendra Modi invites firms to invest in energy sector

Updated: Oct 30, 2019, 08:44 IST | Agencies | Riyadh

The prime minister, who was here attend the third edition of the Kingdom's high-profile annual financial conference, called on the King and the two leaders exchanged views on working together closely to strengthen the bilateral ties

Narendra Modi meets H M King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud in Riyadh on Tuesday. Pic/PTI
Narendra Modi meets H M King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud in Riyadh on Tuesday. Pic/PTI

Riyadh: Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud on Tuesday condemned terrorism in all its forms and manifestations, and agreed to step up bilateral security cooperation.

Modi, who is here to attend the third edition of the Kingdom's high-profile annual financial conference, called on the King and the two leaders exchanged views on working together closely to strengthen the bilateral ties. Briefing the media following the meeting and luncheon hosted by King Salman for Prime Minister Modi, Economic Relations Secretary in the Ministry of External Affairs T S Tirumurti said that the two leaders condemned terrorism in all its forms and manifestations, and agreed to step up bilateral security cooperation.

They also discussed cooperation in agriculture, oil and gas, maritime security, innovative technology, renewable energy, trade and investment between the two countries during their talks. The two countries are expected to sign several agreements in areas like defence industries collaboration, security cooperation, air services agreement, renewable energy, medicine products regulation, prevention of trafficking of narcotics among others in the evening after Prime Minister Modi meets Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman, he said.

Tirumurti said that the Prime Minister will also sign the Strategic Partnership Council Agreement with Crown Prince Mohammad to further cement the bilateral ties in political, defence, security, trade and investment. He said that Prime Minister Modi thanked the Saudi King for ensuring the regular export of crude oil to India despite the attacks on the facilities of Saudi oil giant Aramco. King Salman also congratulated Modi on his party's election victory in May, the official said. Tirumurti said that there has been a considerable progress in bilateral cooperation since the state visit of Crown Prince to India in February.

India, the world's third-largest oil consumer, imports 83 per cent of its oil needs. Saudi Arabia is its second-biggest supplier after Iraq. It sold 40.33 million tonnes of crude oil to India in 2018-19 fiscal, when the country had imported 207.3 million tonnes of oil. India, the 6th largest economy in the world and the 3rd largest energy consumer after the US and China, buys some 200,000 tonnes of LPG every month from Saudi Arabia. Saudi Arabia is still recovering from the September 14 drone attacks on two facilities of Aramco. Despite the attacks, the state energy company Aramco vowed not to reduce shipments to customers as it draws down strategic reserves.

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