Vice president to visit Morocco, Tunisia

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New Delhi, May 26: Vice President Hamid Ansari will embark on a five-day foreign tour on May 30 that will take him to the north African nations of Morocco and Tunisia.

On May 30, he will reach Morocco's capital Rabat at the invitation of Abdelilah Benkirane, prime minister and head of government of Morocco.  

Hamid Ansari

"This visit intends to further strengthen the cordial relations between the two countries, further develop and diversify profile of bilateral economic cooperation and explore new avenues of co-operation and partnership on a wide range of issues of shared common interest," an external affairs ministry statement said.

During the course of visit, Ansari will hold discussions with King Mohammed VI and Prime Minister Benkirane.

Speakers of both houses of the Moroccan parliament and the Moroccan minister for foreign affairs and cooperation will call on Ansari.

The vice president and the Moroccan prime minister will also jointly launch the India-Morocco Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Rabat. Members of the Indian diaspora will interact with Ansari during this event.

During the course of his visit, Ansari will also meet with leading intellectuals and imams of Morocco besides delivering a talk at Mohammed V University in Rabat.

In the second leg of his visit to Morocco, he will visit the city of Marrakesh where he will be hosted by the governor of Marrakesh.

From Morocco, Ansari will reach Tunis on June 2 for a two-day visit to Tunisia at the invitation of Tunisian Prime Minister Habib Essid.

"India has very cordial bilateral relations with Tunisia," another external affairs ministry statement said.

"The economic cooperation between the two countries is deepening with Indian investments in the phosphate sector. During this visit, further avenues of cooperation in various areas of growth would be discussed," it added.

During the course of the visit, Ansari will hold discussions President Beji Caid Essebsi and Prime Minister Essid on a wide range of issues of shared common interest.

The vice president will also be received by the president of the Assembly of the Representatives of the People of Tunisia where he will meet with members of parliament from various parties and the Tunisian-India Parliamentary Group.

Ansari will also deliver a keynote address to the Tunisian diplomatic corps and leading scholars and think tanks at the Tunisian Institute for Strategic Studies.

During his visit to both the countries, Ansari will be accompanied by union Minister of State for Chemicals and Fertilisers Hansraj Gangaram Ahir and four members of parliament.

IANS

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