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Goff welcomes Indian Foreign and Defence Minister


Hon Phil Goff
Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade
Media Statement

24 June 2001

Goff welcomes Indian Foreign and Defence Minister


Foreign Minister Phil Goff expects to have wide range of issues to discuss with India’s Minister for External Affairs and Defence, Jaswant Singh, who is visiting New Zealand this week (24-26 June).

New Zealand technical assistance to the state of Gujarat following the disastrous earthquake there, the world trade agenda, prospects for talks between India and Pakistan over Kashmir, and the situation in Fiji, will be among the subjects on the agenda.

“When I went to India in March this year I invited Minister Singh to visit New Zealand. I’m glad he’s been able to take up the invitation so soon. He is now Defence Minister as well as External Affairs Minister, so we will have plenty to talk about,” Mr Goff said.

Minister Singh will also call on the Prime Minister, Minister of Defence Mark Burton and the Deputy Leader of the Opposition Bill English.

“This is a relationship which is in a growth phase. Trade between India and New Zealand is expanding, and we’re seeing increasing numbers of Indian tourists, film crews and students.”

The visit of Jaswant Singh is the latest of a number of recent Ministerial visits between New Zealand and India.

Since the beginning of the year New Zealand has hosted the Minister for Information Technology and the Minister of State for Food Processing Industries. An Indian parliamentary delegation has also visited new Zealand.

Trade Negotiations Minister Jim Sutton and Mr Goff have both made visits to India this year.

ENDS

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