The first round of India-GCC Senior Officers Meeting

Mar 21: The first round of India-GCC SOM was held on 20 March 2023 in Riyadh. The Indian delegation was led by Dr Ausaf Sayeed, Secretary(CPV&OIA) while the GCC delegation was led by Dr Abdul Aziz Bin Hamad Al-Owaishaq, Assistant Secretary-General for Political Affairs and Negotiations, GCC. The meeting had participation from all 6 member countries of the GCC. The India-GCC SOM meeting was held pursuant to the MOU signed on the India-GCC Mechanism of Consultation during EAM’s visit to Riyadh in September 2022.

Both sides conveyed happiness over the progress in trade and investment between India-GCC countries. Both sides agreed to the early finalisation of the India-GCC Free Trade Agreement(FTA).

Secretary(CPV&OIA) invited more collaboration between India and GCC countries in renewable energy, food security, health, the IT sector and counter-terrorism. Both sides proposed the formation of Joint Working Groups to cater to particular areas of cooperation between India and GCC countries. These joint working groups would be headed by experts and would ensure regular and continuous progress across priority sectors.

Both sides appreciated the progress in relations between India-GCC countries built on historical ties, coupled with growing trade and investment, and the presence of approximately 8.5 million Indian diasporas in the region. GCC as a trade bloc is the largest trade partner to India with a total trade of USD 154 Billion in FY 2021-22 They agreed that people-to-people ties need to be further enhanced. The discussion also focused on regional issues of importance.

Both sides looked forward to an early convention of the India-GCC TROIKA meeting at the Foreign Minister level.

Disclaimer: We donot claim that the images used as part of the news published are always owned by us. From time to time, we use images sourced as part of news or any related images or representations. Kindly take a look at our image usage policy on how we select the image that are used as part of the news.