India and Bhutan Reaffirm Friendship and Commitment to Development Cooperation
Indian Foreign Secretary Vinay Kwatra visited Bhutan from 18-20 January 2023. During his visit, he met Bhutan Prime Minister Lotay Tshering to discuss ways to enhance cooperation between the two nations in various sectors, including energy, education, and digital. The Bhutanese Prime Minister appreciated India’s support for Bhutan’s digital flagship program and central schools, and both sides agreed to explore new areas of partnership in line with the evolving scenario in the energy sector.
Trade-related infrastructure and e-commerce platforms were also discussed as ways to expand Bhutan’s reach in India’s market. The two sides also discussed the 13th Five-Year Plan, which is moving away from the conventional planning system and integrating the essential element of long-term perspective planning. Bhutan’s Prime Minister spoke on how the ongoing national transformation will impact the 13th Plan priorities and drive them by addressing deficiencies observed in the previous plans.
During the meeting, the two sides held wide-ranging discussions on bilateral relations including development partnership under Bhutan’s 12th Five-Year plan, energy cooperation, technology, trade, and economic ties, and people-to-people contacts. Foreign Secretary Kwatra and Foreign Secretary of Bhutan Aum Pema Choden jointly inaugurated key projects implemented with assistance from the Government of India, including the Citizen Service Portal and National Single Window portal.
Foreign Secretary Kwatra reaffirmed the warm bonds of friendship India shares with Bhutan and assured Bhutan’s Prime Minister of India’s firm commitment to partner with Bhutan as per the priorities of the government and people of Bhutan.
The Indian Embassy in Bhutan tweeted, “Foreign Secretary @AmbVMKwatra called on @PMBhutan Lyonchhen (Dr) Lotay Tshering. He reaffirmed the warm bonds of friendship India shares with Bhutan & assured Lyonchhen of India’s firm commitment to partner with Bhutan as per the priorities of the government & people of Bhutan.“
In conclusion, the meeting between Foreign Secretary Vinay Mohan Kwatra and Bhutan Prime Minister Lotay Tshering was focused on discussing ways to enhance cooperation between the two nations in various sectors, including energy, education, and digital. Both sides also discussed the 13th Five-Year Plan and ways to strengthen trade-related infrastructure and e-commerce platforms. The two sides reaffirmed their friendship and commitment to partner with each other on the basis of the priorities of the government and people of Bhutan.
India and Bhutan share an exemplary bilateral relationship characterized by mutual trust, goodwill, and understanding, strong bonds of friendship, and close people-to-people ties. This visit reinforced the long-standing tradition of regular high-level exchanges between the two countries to discuss all issues of mutual interest.
The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Kootneeti Team