Wed, 05 Oct 2022

New Delhi [India], August 18 (ANI): Ministry of External Affairs Secretary (East) Saurabh Kumar and Undersecretary Theresa Lazaro co-chaired the 4th India-Philippines Strategic Dialogue in Manila on Thursday.

Both sides exchanged views on regional and global issues, and bilateral security cooperation, according to MEA spokesperson Arindam Bagchi.

"4th India-Philippines Strategic Dialogue co-chaired by Secretary (East) @AmbSaurabhKumar and Undersecretary Theresa Lazaro held in Manila today. The two sides exchanged views on regional and global issues and bilateral security cooperation," Bagchi said in a tweet.

"The two sides discussed India -Philippines Defence and Security Cooperation and exchanged views on regional and global issues of mutual interest as well as ASEAN-related matters," according to the statement released by External Affairs Ministry.

Secretary (East) also paid a courtesy call on Enrique A Manalo, Secretary of Foreign Affairs (Minister) of the Philippines.

On Wednesday, Saurabh Kumar and Lazaro co-chaired the 13th India-Philippines Foreign Office Consultation.

During the Foreign Office Consultations, both sides expressed their desire to advance bilateral relations and expand engagement in areas including agriculture, trade, pharmaceuticals, fintech, education, defence and security, and people-to-people ties, according to the statement.

It was also agreed to work to expand engagement in other fields such as space, development cooperation and civil aviation.

"The two sides agreed to convene bilateral mechanisms in different sectors at an early date and work towards holding the next Ministerial level Joint Commission for Bilateral Cooperation at mutually convenient dates," the statement reads.

In February, External Affairs Minister (EAM) S Jaishankar visited the Philippines with an aim to strengthen bilateral ties.

He held a bilateral meeting with his counterpart. The two Ministers had reviewed developments in bilateral relations since the meeting of the Joint Commission on Bilateral Cooperation that they co-chaired in the virtual format in November 2020.

Both the leaders had also discussed the future trajectory of the wide-ranging engagement between the two countries. The two Ministers also had an in-depth exchange of views on regional and international issues of mutual interest. (ANI)

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