India, Norway to work together on ocean economy, SDGs

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New Delhi, Jan 8 (IANS) India and Norway agreed to work together on ocean economy and the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) following delegation-level talks headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Norwegian counterpart Erna Solberg here on Tuesday.

“The Sustainable Development Goals match India’s growth targets,” Modi said in a joint address to the media with Solberg following the meeting.

“And it is a matter of happiness for us that both countries are cooperating with the Norway-India Partnership Initiative on the issue of mother and child health,” he said,

He said that Prime Minister Solberg has contributed significantly to global efforts to achieve the SDGs.

Modi also stressed on the importance of the ocean economy for India.

Stating that 15 per cent of India’s population live in coastal areas, he said Norway has immense experience in harnessing the ocean economy.

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India and Norway signed a new agreement on a bilateral maritime dialogue following the talks.

Modi also said that India and Norway have strong cooperation at international forums.

“We work with close cooperation and coordination on issues like UN Security Council reforms, multilateral export control regimes and fighting terrorism,” he said.

On her part, Solberg said that the world will not be able to achieve the SDGs if India is not on board.

Referring to her personal interest in women’s empowerment, she said that India has been working hard in this area.

Solberg said both India and Norway have agreed to increase cooperation in ocean economy.

“It will create more jobs and more medicine,” she said.

Earlier in the day, Solberg was accorded a ceremonial welcome at the Rashtrapati Bhavan here.

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External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj also called on the visiting dignitary during the course of which the two leaders discussed expanding bilateral cooperation across all areas.

The Norwegian Prime Minister will also deliver the inaugural address at the Raisina Dialogue, a multilateral conference that addresses the major issues facing the global community.

Solberg arrived here on Monday on what is her first visit to India.

–IANS

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