G20: Modi meets Saudi Crown Prince, to hold trilateral talks with Trump, Abe, Xi

Srinagar: Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi met Saudi Arabia Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on the sidelines of G20 Summit in Argentina’s Buenos Aires on Thursday. The Prime Minister is on a five-day visit to the nation to attend the summit on Friday and Saturday.

During their meeting, the two leaders discussed ways to boost economic, cultural and energy ties, besides ways to enhance investment in technology, renewable energy and food security, The Indian Express reported.

Taking to Twitter, PM Modi said, “Had a fruitful interaction with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud. We discussed multiple aspects of India-Saudi Arabia relations and ways to further boost economic, cultural and energy ties.”

Sources in the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) said, “In recent years, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has been a valuable partner. The relationship has expanded beyond the Indian community to issues related to the economy, energy and security. All issues of bilateral and regional interest will be discussed.”

The PM later met the UN Secretary-General, who, according to sources, reached out to the former for the second time in two months. The meeting signifies the importance that both leaders attach to the issue of climate change. This outreach comes just a week before the COP24 meeting in Katowice in Poland.

“It reflects the respect in which the Prime Minister and his initiatives are held globally to take the lead on issues of global importance,” the sources said.

Besides the two, the Prime Minister is also expected to hold a trilateral meeting with US President Donald Trump and Japanese Premier Shinzo Abe amidst China flexing its muscles in the Indo-Pacific region. Yesterday, White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said the trilateral meeting with PM Modi will be held towards the end of the Trump-Abe talks which is part of the series of the meetings the US President will hold during the two days.

Modi will also meet Chinese President Xi Jinping and German Chancellor Angela Merkel, the Ministry of External Affairs had said on the eve of his departure. Modi is likely to meet France’s President Emmanuel Macron as well.

The Prime Minister will address the summit and discuss key topics such as Ayushman Bharat, MUDRA yojana, Jan Dhan and GST. The theme for the 10th G20 summit, as decided by Buenos Aires, is “building consensus for fair and sustainable development”.

-KR Web Desk

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