Portugal committed to strengthen relations with India: Amado

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Panaji, Jul 8 (UNI) Portugal Foreign Affairs Minister Luis Amado today said his country is committed to strengthening bilateral relations with India.

''Portugal, with a population of ten million, is a gateway to Europe and India could play a big role in strengthening bilateral relations in all sectors in a big way for mutual benefit,'' Mr Amado told mediapersons here.

The minister, along with a 15-member trade delegation including Portugal Ambassador in India Luis Fillipe Castro Mendes and consul general of Portugal in Goa, Paulo Neves pacinho, was here on a two-day visit.

The Portugal minister said his visit was an ''exploratory visit'' and he is now planning a detailed visit to India next year, to identify specific sectors of cooperation including banking, infrastructure development, tourism and consultancy.

The minister had wide ranging discussion with state Home Minister Ravi S Naik and chief secretary J P Singh, on his arrival to explore the areas of cooperation and development through mutual participation.

The minister, later addressing the Goa Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI), said it had a big role in expanding the trade and economic relations with Portugal and vice versa.

''There have been a significant increase in bilateral cooperation between India and Portugal during the last two years,'' he said.

Earlier, the GCCI president Nitin Kunkuleinkar briefed the foreign delegation about the strengths of Goa in attracting foreign investments, including in tourism sector.

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