Wed, 07 Jun 2023

New Delhi [India], May 25 (ANI): The third Foreign Office Consultations (FOC) between India and Zambia were held in New Delhi.

The Indian side was led by Joint Secretary of East and Southern Africa Puneet R. Kundal, and the Zambian side was led by Ambassador Isabelle M.M. Lemba is also the Permanent Secretary (IRC) in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of Zambia, Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said in a press release on Thursday.

During the FOC, both delegations reviewed the multi-faceted bilateral relationship, covering political exchanges, development partnership projects, defence cooperation, trade and economic matters, consular issues, and cooperation in areas such as Agriculture, Education, Health, Mines and Minerals, Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), etc, the MEA press release said.

MEA press release further said, "The significance of high-level visits, particularly the early convening of the Joint Permanent Commission (JPC) was emphasized. While expressing satisfaction over the existing bilateral ties, both sides agreed to diversify cooperation in various areas, to further strengthen this relationship."Both sides also discussed UN and other multilateral issues of mutual interest, including UN Security Council reforms, the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), South African Development Cooperation (SADC) and the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).

Both sides agreed to continue high-level political exchanges and regular meetings of the joint institutional mechanisms to keep the partnership vibrant and mutually beneficial.

Both sides agreed to hold the next round of Consultations at mutually convenient dates in 2024 in Lusaka. (ANI)

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