India’s External minister visits Kenya to enhance bilateral relations

India External Affairs minister DR S Jaishankar/ COURTESY

India External Affairs minister DR S Jaishankar is expected in Kenya on Saturday, ahead of the India- Africa Forum Summit– IV scheduled later in the year.

According to Financial Express publication, the minister will be in Kenya between June 12-14, 2021 and along with his Kenyan counterpart Amb Raychelle Omamo, he will chair the third meeting of the India-Kenya Joint Commission meeting.

“The agenda of the meeting is to review all the aspects of the bilateral relationship between the two countries and to also explore new avenues of taking forward the relationship,” the website reports.

Kenya and India enjoy close and cordial relations.

With Mozambique, Mauritius, Comoros, Somalia, Seychelles, South Africa, Tanzania and Madagascar, Kenya is a member of the Indian Ocean Rim Association for Regional Cooperation (IOR-ARC) which was established in 1997 and seeks to counter China’s influence in the region.

Kenya and India are maritime neighbours with robust and multi-faceted partnership, marked by regular high-level visits, increasing trade and investment and extensive people to people contacts.

On May 28, Kenya has donated 12 tonnes of food products to India as part of its Covid-19 relief efforts.

Kenya’s High Commissionerto India Willy Bett handed over the package of humanitarian aid, saying the government of Kenya stands in solidarity with the people and government of India.

The State visit of PM Narendra Modi to Kenya on July 10-11 2016 gave a new impetus to bilateral partnership.

Earlier, President Uhuru Kenyatta had attended the third India-Africa Forum Summit and held bilateral meeting with PM Modi in October 2015.

During the state visit, PM Modi and President Uhuru Kenyatta discussed various bilateral interests among them defence, trade and developmental assistance. MoUs were signed in the respective spheres.

PM Modi and President Kenyatta addressed an India-Kenya Business Forum. Five business to business MoUs were signed on the side-lines of the business event.

India announced gifting of a state-of-the-art made in India cancer therapy machine – Bhabhatron II – to Kenyatta National Hospital, grant of $ 1 million for the refurbishment of the Mahatma Gandhi graduate library of the University of Nairobi and holding of the first ever Festival of India in Kenya. Modi also donated 30 field ambulances for the use of the Kenya Defence Forces.

Uhuru paid a reciprocal State Visit to India from on January 10-12, 2017 on an invitation by PM Modi.

During the visit, President Kenyatta, who was accompanied by Cabinet secretaries, senior officials and a high-level business delegation,  held meetings with the President and Vice President, attended the Vibrant Gujarat Summit and a business forum in Delhi.

Bilateral cooperation in defence and maritime security, enhancing trade and investment relationship and counterterrorism were also discussed.

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