7th session of India-Belarus Intergovernmental Commission held in Minsk

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The Indian Air Force Surya Kiran aerobatics display team flies in formation past an Indian national flag during the inauguration of Aero India 2009 at the Yelahanka Air Force Station in Bangalore on February 11, 2009. Aero India 2009 is aimed at bringing under one roof exhibitors from all around the globe to showcase the best in aviation. AFP PHOTO/Dibyangshu SARKAR (Photo credit should read DIBYANGSHU SARKAR/AFP/Getty Images)
The Indian Air Force Surya Kiran aerobatics display team flies in formation past an Indian national flag during the inauguration of Aero India 2009 at the Yelahanka Air Force Station in Bangalore on February 11, 2009. Aero India 2009 is aimed at bringing under one roof exhibitors from all around the globe to showcase the best in aviation. AFP PHOTO/Dibyangshu SARKAR (Photo credit should read DIBYANGSHU SARKAR/AFP/Getty Images)

Who: 7th session of India-Belarus Intergovernmental Commission
Where: Minsk, Belarus
What: Held
When: 7 September 2015
Why: To deepen bilateral relations

The seventh session of India-Belarus Intergovernmental Commission on Trade, Economic, Scientific, Technological and Cultural Cooperation was held on 7 September 2015 in the Belarus capital Minsk.

It was co-chaired by Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Commerce and Industry Nirmala Sitharaman and her counterpart Vitali Mikhailovich Vovk.

Outcomes of the Intergovernmental Commission session

• Bilateral trade target was set as 1 billion US dollars to be achieved by 2018 from the present level of 400 million US dollars.
• The trade will be achieved by stepping up cooperation in pharmaceuticals, mining machinery, energy, fertilizer, and tourism sectors.
• A Joint Working Group (JWG) will be set up to discuss further cooperation in health-care and pharmaceuticals sectors. Pharmaceuticals constitute the bulk of India’s exports to Belarus amounting to about 35 million US dollars per annum.
• A Joint Working Group (JWG) will be set up to promote tourism between the two countries.
• Both the countries discussed the issues relating to long term contract for supply of potash fertilizers to India and possible equity participation of Indian fertilizer companies in Belarusian company producing Potash Fertilizer.
• Both the countries agreed to hold the next session of the commission in New Delhi in 2016.

Comment

The session of the commission and its outcomes show the deepening relations between India and Belarus in recent times.

During the visit of the president Pranab Mukherjee to Belarus in June 2015, India offered lines of credit worth 100 million US dollars and also accorded it the status of a free market economy.