NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday reaffirmed India's stand on the ongoing Russia-Ukraine conflict, saying, "Ukraine dispute can be resolved through dialogue and diplomacy."
At a press meeting after meeting Italian PM Giorgia Meloni, PM Modi said, "From the beginning of the Ukraine conflict, India has clarified that this dispute can only be resolved through dialogues and diplomacy. And India is fully ready to contribute to any peace process."
Welcoming PM Meloni on her first visit to India, PM Modi said, "In last year's elections, the people of Italy voted for her and she became the first woman and youngest PM of Italy. I congratulate her on behalf of Indians for this historic achievement."
The Italian PM is the chief guest and the keynote speaker at the 8th Raisina Dialogue 2023.
This year marks the diamond jubilee, or 75 years of the bilateral relations between India and Italy.
"On this occasion, we have decided to give Strategic Partnership status to the Indo-Italy partnership. India will further strengthen its relationship with Italy in renewable energy, hydrogen, IT, telecom, semiconductors and space. A Startup Bridge is being announced today between India and Italy, which we welcome," said PM Modi.
He said India was also focussing on further strengthening economic relations with Italy. "Our 'Make in India' and 'Artmanirbhar Bharat' (self-reliant India) campaigns are opening immense opportunities for investments in India," said PM Modi.
He further said India and Italy are walking shoulder to shoulder in the fight against terrorism and separatism.
"We discussed further strengthening this cooperation," added PM Modi.
New Delhi on Thursday decided to create an action plan to celebrate the 75th anniversary of relations between India and Italy.
"With this we will be able to show the achievements of both countries' diversity, history, science and technology, innovation, sports and other fields on the global stage," said PM Modi.
"Today, we're announcing the establishment of a 'Start Up Bridge' between India and Italy. We welcome this. There is one more sector wherein both the countries are beginning a new chapter, that is - defence cooperation," he added.
In the defence manufacturing sector in India, opportunities for co-production and co-development are arising which can be beneficial for both the countries.
"We have also decided to conduct regular joint exercise and training courses," said PM Modi.
He also welcomed Italy's active partnership in Indo-Pacific.
"It is very happy that Italy has decided to join Indo-Pacific Ocean Initiative. With this we will be able to identify concrete subjects to increase our cooperation in Indo-Pacific," said PM Modi.
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