The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia held historic meetings with the President of the Republic of India, His Excellency Dr. A.P.J.Abdul Kalam and the Prime Minister of the Republic of India, His Excellency Dr. Manmohan Singh during his State visit to the Republic of India from 24 – 27 January, 2006.
The two sides exchanged views and had in-depth discussions that touched upon the mutual interests of both countries as well as the security, stability, peace and prosperity in the whole region.
Realizing that this visit heralds a new era in India-Saudi Arabia relations and constitutes a landmark in the development of increased understanding and cooperation between the two countries and creation of a mutually beneficial partnership.
Reflecting the view that both countries are developing a broad strategic vision, and are determined to work together closely for the welfare and benefit of their peoples and for peace and stability in the region and the world.
Desirous of building upon and expanding the close ties and friendship and the many commonalties between the two countries and peoples.
Affirming their commitment to the ideals of tolerance, harmony and diversity between societies and the importance of dialogue and peaceful resolution of disputes, Conscious of their responsibility for promoting peace, stability and security in the region and the world, Recognizing the close inter-linkage of the stability and security of the Gulf region and the Indian sub-continent and the need for maintaining a secure and peaceful environment for the development of the countries in the region, Desirous of further strengthening people - to - people ties
The two sides have agreed as follows:
Exchanges of high-level bilateral visits and consultations should be intensified in order to give an impetus to and expand the scope of bilateral cooperation and understanding.
Terrorism is a scourge for all mankind and there is a need to intensify and coordinate bilateral, regional and global cooperation to combat and eradicate the menace of terrorism.
The two Governments would closely and actively cooperate to fight the menace of terrorism and other transnational crimes like money laundering, drugs and arms smuggling in a sustained and comprehensive manner. The signing of the Memorandum of Understanding between Saudi Arabia and India on Combating Crime will help in the fight against terrorism, extremism and criminal elements. The two countries shall make concerted efforts for an early realization of the proposals to conclude a Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism which is before the UN General Assembly, and the setting up of an International Counter- Terrorism Centre as called for by the International Conference on Counter- Terrorism held in Riyadh in February 2005, in response to the idea proposed by King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud.
To expand and diversify mutual trade and investments and, noting with satisfaction the signing of agreements regarding Promotion and Protection of Investments and Avoidance of Double Taxation, called for the exploration of investment opportunities in all sectors, including infrastructure, in both countries.
Both sides affirmed the importance of stability in the oil market for the world economy. The Indian side expressed understanding and appreciation of the balanced petroleum policy of Saudi Arabia which is considered a trusted and reliable source of oil supplies to international markets in general and the Indian market in particular. In this context, the Saudi side appreciated the Indian initiative to initiate a regional forum for dialogue among Asian oil and gas producers and consumers.
· Both countries will develop a strategic energy partnership based on complementarily and interdependence. The elements of this partnership would include, inter alia:
· Reliable, stable and increased volume of crude oil supplies, through “evergreen” long-term contracts.
· Cooperative and joint ventures, both in the public and private sectors, in the upstream and downstream oil and gas sectors in India and Saudi Arabia as well as in third countries.
· Saudi investments in oil refining, marketing and storage in India, subject to commercial viability.
· Setting up of India-Saudi ventures for gas-based fertilizer plants in Saudi Arabia.
The two governments would encourage and support entrepreneurs in both countries to harness each other’s strengths for mutual benefit and promote economic cooperation actively.
The two countries would work for closer cooperation in the field of technology, in particular in the field of information and communication technology, agriculture, bio-technology, and non-conventional energy technologies. India will assist in setting up an ICT Centre of Excellence as well as institutes of higher learning, involving both education and research, in the field of technology in Saudi Arabia. India would offer opportunities for Saudi students to pursue Post-Graduate and Doctorate level studies in technical institutions in India, and enhance cooperation in human resource development related to telecommunications. It was agreed that an Educational Exchange Programme between the two countries should be finalized and concluded at an early date.
The two countries would explore the prospect of cooperation in the health sector to realize the promising possibilities for enhancing cooperation in this sector, including health services, exchange of health personnel, health education and pharmaceuticals.
It was agreed that cooperation in the field of science and technology, tourism, youth affairs and sport, agriculture research and education, technical education and vocational training and other fields of mutual benefit should be intensified through signing of agreements and memorandum of understanding as necessary.
The two sides agreed to cultivate and encourage cultural exchanges between the two countries, both at official and popular levels.
The meetings of the bilateral Joint Commission will be held frequently and regularly, and the next meeting of the Joint Commission to be held later in 2006 has been tasked to ensure follow-up and implementation of the decisions taken by the two leaders during King Abdullah’s visit to India.
In the field of political cooperation, both sides exchanged views about international developments, especially those related to the Middle East, and affirmed their commitment to the principles of international legality and the importance of maintaining international peace and stability. The two sides agreed to work together towards resolving outstanding conflicts in the world through peaceful means.
Both countries emphasized the importance of the Beirut Arab Peace Initiative and the Road Map. They realized that the complementarity between the two plans would invigorate the peace process in the Middle East, and lead to the establishment of a viable and independent State of Palestine living in peace and prosperity within secure borders side by side with Israel.
With regard to the Iraqi situation, both sides expressed their hope that Iraq would turn a new page in history that would assure its security, unity, territorial integrity and prosperity, and respect for its sovereignty and independence.
The two sides welcomed the ongoing dialogue between India and Pakistan and their continued efforts aimed at settling the outstanding issues between the two countries.
Done in New Delhi on the 27th of January, 2006 corresponding to 27th of 12, 1426 H.
Dr. Manmohan Singh Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud
Prime Minister of the Republic of India King of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia