Elmar Mammadyarov: Ladies and gentlemen! I welcome you at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. As you probably know, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of India Ms. Sushma Swaraj is on an official visit to Azerbaijan. Today, Madame Minister was received by the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan, H.E Mr. Ilham Aliyev. Tomorrow, S. Swaraj will attend the Ministerial Meeting of the Non-Aligned Movement in Baku. The Minister's visit program also includes acquaintance with Ateshgah sanctuary complex.
Relations between Azerbaijan and India have historic and traditional character. Till the beginning of the last century pilgrims and merchants from India visited Ateshgah.
At first we communicated in the tete-a-tete, then in an expanded format and discussed issues of cooperation in political, economic, energy, transport, culture, trade, science, tourism, pharmacy spheres between our countries. We have agreed to hold the Bilateral Joint Commission meeting in May this year.
Today, “Agreement between the Government of the Republic of Azerbaijan and the Government of the Republic of India on exemption from visa requirement for holders of diplomatic, official and service passports” and "Memorandum of Understanding between ADA University, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Azerbaijan and the Foreign Service Institute, Ministry of External Affairs, Republic of India on cooperation in diplomatic field" were signed.
As you may know, cooperation between our countries in the field of energy is developing successfully, Indian companies have participated in development of Azeri, Chirag and Gunashli fields. North-South and South-West transport routes have the potential to link the Atlantic Ocean with the Indian Ocean in a shorter time. Madame Minister expressed India’s interest in deepening cooperation in this direction.
We also discussed issues of cooperation in the field of information technology and the preparation of specialists. We have also mentioned Indian companies investing in the non-oil sector of Azerbaijan. In general, the Intergovernmental Joint Commission plays an important role for the development of our economic and trade relations. As I mentioned earlier, we are planning to hold the meeting of the Comission in May, 2018.
I informed my colleague about the negotiation process on the settlement of Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. I should note that India has supported Azerbaijan's fair position on the settlement of Armenia-Azerbaijan conflict in the documents adopted in the framework of the Non-Aligned Movement, as well as other organizations.