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India-Bulgaria Joint Statement during State Visit of President to Bulgaria (September 4-6, 2018)

September 06, 2018

  • At the invitation of His Excellency Mr. Rumen Radev, President of the Republic of Bulgaria, His Excellency Mr. Ram Nath Kovind, President of the Republic of India, undertook a State Visit to Bulgaria from 4-6 September, 2018. The leaders held wide ranging and constructive discussions and underlined the growing convergence between the two countries on regional and international issues.
  • His Excellency President Kovind was accompanied by his spouse Mrs. Savita Kovind and Mr. Parshottam Rupala, Minister of State in the Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare and Ministry of Panchayati Raj; Members of Parliament Mr. Sunil Kumar Singh and Mr. Ram Shakal along with other senior government officials.
  • During the visit, H.E. Mr. Ram Nath Kovind met with the President of the Republic of Bulgaria H.E. Mr. Rumen Radev. He also had meetings and talks with the Prime Minister H.E. Mr. Boyko Borissov and Rector of the Sofia University Prof. Atanas Gerdjikov.
  • In the course of the bilateral talks, the two leaders acknowledged the relations of traditional friendship, fruitful cooperation and close and dynamic partnership between Bulgaria and India and reaffirmed the mutual desire to further strengthen political, economic, commercial, science & technology, educational and cultural cooperation between the two countries.
  • President Radev expressed readiness to work together with President Kovind for building comprehensive Bulgarian-Indian partnership in the light of India’s emergence as a global power and within the framework of the EU-India strategic partnership.
  • They welcomed the growing convergence on contemporary global issues and agreed to enhance India-EU cooperation in all multilateral fora. They also recognised their common responsibility towards ensuring international peace and security, and an open and inclusive international order. The two leaders also commended the positive EU-India cooperation based on shared principles and values of democracy, freedom, rule of law and respect for human rights and territorial integrity of states.
  • Both Presidents agreed to further intensify and diversify high-level engagement through more frequent and wider range of bilateral exchanges at multiple levels. They appreciated the role of continuing people-to-people exchanges between the two countries and underscored the importance of more active exchanges for enhancing understanding of each other’s cultures.
  • Both Presidents expressed satisfaction with the valuable cooperation and mutual support, including for candidatures and initiatives, within the UN and other international organizations. They agreed to intensify this cooperation particularly on global issues such as climate change, peace, security and sustainable development.
  • The two leaders underscored the need for reform of the UN Security Council, including its expansion in both categories of membership, to make it more representative, accountable, effective and responsive to the geo-political realities of the 21st Century. Bulgaria reiterated its support for India’s bid for permanent membership in the enlarged UNSC.
  • The two leaders unequivocally condemned terrorism in all its forms and manifestations including cross-border terrorism and stressed the importance of international efforts to prevent and fight the scourge of terrorism. They called upon all countries to work towards rooting out terrorist safe havens and infrastructure, disrupting terrorist networks and their financing channels, and halting cross-border movement of terrorists. Both leaders also affirmed that terrorism cannot be justified on any grounds whatsoever and it should not be associated with any religion, creed, nationality and ethnicity.
  • The two leaders agreed to strengthen counter-terrorism initiatives through multilateral fora and called upon all UN member countries to implement the UNSC Resolution 1267 and other relevant resolutions designating terrorist entities. The leaders also agreed to work together on early adoption of the Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism in the UN.
  • During the visit, the two Presidents witnessed the signing of the following documents :

    i. A Programme of Cooperation between India and Bulgaria in the field of Science & Technology for the period 2018-2021;

    ii. Memorandum of Understanding between India and Bulgaria on Cooperation in Tourism;

    iii. Memorandum of Understanding between Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) and Sofia University on establishment of ICCR Chair for Hindi Language; and

    iv. Memorandum of Understanding between Invest India and Invest Bulgaria.

  • The Presidents welcomed growing bilateral cooperation in peaceful uses of nuclear energy and agreed to strengthen collaboration in mutually beneficial scientific and training activities. In this regard, both sides welcomed the signing of an MOU on Cooperation between the Global Centre for Nuclear Energy (GCNEP) of India and the Institute for Nuclear Research and Nuclear Energy of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences.
  • In addressing a Forum of the business community from India and Bulgaria, which included representatives from various chambers of commerce in both countries and leading business houses, the two leaders agreed to enhance trade and investment ties. The Presidents noted the growth in bilateral trade during recent years and expressed their conviction that this momentum could be enhanced by tapping the vast potential that existed in areas such as ICT, electronics/software, light engineering products, auto components, pharmaceuticals, textiles, agro-products, food processing, tourism, hospitality and creative industries. They encouraged SMEs and mid-cap companies to play a growing role in the economic and commercial exchanges between the two countries. Reaffirming their commitment to facilitate a conducive environment for enhancing bilateral trade and investment in compliance with relevant legislation,, the leaders underlined the importance of regular and sustained economic cooperation dialogue through the India-Bulgaria Joint Commission for Economic, Scientific and Technical Cooperation.
  • H.E. President Kovind visited Sofia University "St. Kliment Ohridski” and presented a lecture on "Education as an instrument of change and shared prosperity”.
  • The two Presidents inaugurated the statue of Mahatma Gandhi at the famous South Park in Central Sofia. The statue was created by Bulgarian sculptor Mr. Ivan Rusev.
  • H.E. President Kovind noted with satisfaction that the Indian diaspora in Bulgaria was well integrated into Bulgaria’s social and economic fabric and contributed positively to it.
  • The State Visit marked the beginning of a new era of cooperation between the two countries and is an important step in the enhancement of bilateral relations.
  • His Excellency Mr. Ram Nath Kovind, President of the Republic of India, expressed appreciation to H.E. Mr. Rumen Radev, President of the Republic of Bulgaria, for the warm hospitality accorded to him and his delegation. Both sides expressed their confidence in the future multi-dimensional enhancement of the relationship.
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