Mauritius gets Dornier and Dhruv on lease, $100 million for defence shopping from India
After concluding his Maldives visit, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on his last leg of his two-nation visit on Sunday night arrived in Mauritius -- India's strategically key maritime neighbour in the Indian Ocean region -- to further deepen ties between the two countries. Anish Singh reports
Aiming to enhance their bilateral relations to a newer height, India and Mauritius have signed a special $100 million Defence Line of Credit, which will enable the procurement of defence assets from New Delhi.
"I am happy today to see that the agreement which will be providing for a Dornier aircraft and an Advanced Light Helicopter Dhruv on lease to Mauritius on a gratis basis for 2 years, helping shore up its capabilities to patrol and monitor its extensive maritime domain more effectively," External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said in Mauritius on Monday, who is on a 2-day official visit to the country.
"Such initiatives underline once again that the security of Mauritius is the security of India; in the prosperity of Mauritius is our prosperity," he said.
As part of its Vaccine Maitri initiative, New Delhi had supplied one lakh Made in India doses immediately after India rolled out its vaccination program.
Besides, Jaishankar handed over an additional one lakh doses to Prime Minister Pravind Jugnauth on Monday and said, "We were truly glad to facilitate this commercial procurement of which further consignments would be arriving in the coming weeks."
India stands with Mauritius during Covid-19
Under its Mission SAGAR initiative, India delivered 23 tonnes of essential medicines, half a million tablets of hydroxychloroquine, a special consignment of Ayurvedic medicines and a 14-member Medical Assistance Team to Mauritius.
Comprehensive Economic Cooperation and Partnership Agreement
Stating that today is indeed a special day in India-Mauritius special relationship, the minister said that India is privileged to have entered into a Comprehensive Economic Cooperation and Partnership Agreement with Mauritius.
"This agreement is India's first-such Agreement with an African country. It will provide a timely boost for the revival of our post-covid economies and also enable Indian investors to use Mauritius as a launch-pad for business expansion into continental Africa helping the prospect of Mauritius emerging as a 'hub of Africa'," he said.
The current global imports of India stood at over $15 billion. This is therefore a significant opportunity for Mauritius to benefit from access to the Indian market, the minister added.
As regards trade in services, India has offered 95 sub-sectors from 11 broad services sectors.
Services contribute, "I believe, 76 per cent of the GDP of Mauritius, and CECPA will surely boost the dynamism of the services sector in Mauritius. The CECPA could also facilitate Indian investment in the services sector in Mauritius, especially in the ICT sector as Indian companies could benefit by leveraging the bilingual prowess of Mauritius for investments in Francophone Africa," he said.
He also conveyed Prime Minister Narendra Modi's official invitation to Mauritius PM to visit India at a mutually convenient time.
After concluding his Maldives visit, Jaishankar on his last leg of his two-nation visit, arrived on Sunday night in Mauritius, India's strategically key maritime neighbour in the Indian Ocean region to further deepen ties between the two countries.