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Third India-Central Asia Dialogue 2021

India shares close historical and cultural linkages with the Central Asian region. The mutuality of rich cultural heritage has laid the foundation of diplomatic engagement and people-to-people contact in modern times. The 3rd meeting of the India-Central Asia Dialogue was held in New Delhi on 19 December 2021 under the chairmanship of the External Affairs Minister of India Dr S. Jaishankar.  Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Republic of Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Republic of Uzbekistan took part in the meeting. 

Indian External Affairs Minister Dr S Jaishankar met all five of his counterparts bilaterally and jointly and highlighted the need to work on 4cs- commerce, capacity enhancement, connectivity, and contact. This will further mark India’s presence in this region. All five Foreign Ministers called on Prime Minister Narendra Modi who himself had visited all central Asian countries and called it an extended neighbourhood and felicitated them for the upcoming 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations.

The Ministers underlined the civilizational, cultural, trade and people-to-people linkages between India and Central Asian countries and reaffirmed their commitment to building a comprehensive and enduring India-Central Asia partnership. They highly appreciated the role of the India-Central Asia Dialogue, as an important and effective platform to strengthen cooperation between the countries as well as exchange views on various regional and international issues of mutual interest. They emphasized that the establishment of long-term relations between Central Asia and India is aimed at enhancing regional peace, security, stability, sustainable economic growth and prosperity in the region. They discussed further strengthening of the India-Central Asia Dialogue and agreed to hold regular annual meetings of the Dialogue.

The Ministers discussed the Central Asia-India cooperation in the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic. The Foreign Ministers of Central Asian countries appreciated India’s assistance in the supply of vaccines and essential medicines during the early stage of the fight against Covid-19. They also emphasized the need for cooperation in the fight against pandemics and their aftermath. They also appreciated the important role of the Indian Technical and Economic Cooperation (ITEC) Programme in the capacity building and human resource development of their countries. They also discussed means and ways to further increase trade between the countries. Through platforms like these, all the countries are making sure to work and further enhance their relations with each other and create a better, stable and peaceful region.