3 February 2014

Tunisia: India Willing to Initiate New Phase of Economic Partnership With Tunisia - S. Kurshid

Kasbah — Indian Minister of External Affairs, on Monday, welcomed the peaceful transfer of power in Tunisia and the ratification of a new constitution enshrining democratic principles and human rights.

He told the media after his meeting with interim Prime Minister Mehdi Jomaa that "Tunisia has shown to the entire world that its people were able to peacefully defend the principles of freedoms and democracy, away from any form of violence."

"Tunisia has proved that it is possible for various ideological currents to co-exist and overcome together a delicate transition stage," he added.

He congratulated the government and people of Tunisia on the major steps taken towards the completion of the transition period and restoring stability.

Kurshid said he had discussed with Mehdi Jomaa ways to boost bilateral economic co-operation and reviewed regional and international issues of mutual interest.

He expressed his country's willingness to initiate a new phase of economic partnership with Tunisia.

The Indian minister also stated that significant opportunities for economic co-operation are available to both countries. He cited, in particular, pharmaceutical industries, agriculture, automotive components, tourism and textiles and clothing.

India is the largest phosphate and chemical fertiliser customer of Tunisia.

In July 2013, a Tunisia-India phosphate acid plant was set up in Skhira, with investments of 750 million dinars.

The plant, which employs about 500 persons, has a production capacity of 360,000 tons of phosphoric acid per year, totally intended for export to India.

Tunisia imports from India, in particular, mobile telephones, earth-moving equipment, iron, steel, sugar and tea.

Salman Kurshid's visit to Tunisia is part of a tour in the region (Morocco and Sudan).

India is seeking international support for a seat in the UN Security Council.

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