The foreign ministers of India and Canada underscored improving trade ties between the two nations and cooperation with regard to the Covid-19 pandemic as they participated in a Track 1.5 dialogue co-hosted by think tanks.
S Jaishankar, India’s external affairs minister, addressed the virtual Canada-India Track 1.5 Dialogue: Bilateral Relations and Multilateral Initiatives in the Era of Covid-19 Recovery, hosted by Ontario-based Centre for International Governance Innovation (CIGI) and Gateway House: Indian Council on Global Relations.
Jaishankar tweeted he was “delighted” to participate in the third edition of the dialogue along with his counterpart François-Philippe Champagne, Canada’s foreign minister. “Both of us expressed confidence in the further growth of our bilateral relationship. Underlined how closely India and Canada are cooperating in global affairs,” he said.
In a complementary tweet, Champagne said, “We discussed our strong commercial and investment relationship, with record numbers in 2019 of more than $10bn in bilateral trade. We’ll continue to work together to bring it to its full potential.”
The exchange of views came even as India joined the Canada-led Ministerial Coordination Group on Covid-19 earlier this month, with Champagne appreciating the “critical role” that India is playing with regard to the requirements globally for pharma products needed to combat the coronavirus disease.
Also participating in the virtual meet on Wednesday were India’s high commissioner to Ottawam Ajay Bisaria, and his counterpart in New Delhi, Nadir Patel.
Discussions at the dialogue included examining “bilateral relations between Canada and India and explore multilateral initiatives in the era of Covid-19 recovery” and “the new geo-economics of the Indo-Pacific region and digital cooperation between Canada and India”.
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