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Cambodian King Norodom Sihamoni arrives in India on maiden state visit

IANS | May 29, 2023 01:43 PM

NEW DELHI: Cambodian King Norodom Sihamoni on Monday arrived in New Delhi on his maiden state visit to India.

He was welcomed by Minister of State for External Affairs Rajkumar Ranjan Singh on his arrival at the airport.

"An opportunity to further deepen the civilisational relations between India and Cambodia, " External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Arindam Bagchi tweeted.

King Sihamoni will be in India on a three-day visit.

"The state visit marks the culmination of the celebrations of the 70th anniversary of diplomatic relations between India and Cambodia, which were established in 1952, " a statement issued by the ministry said.

This visit by the King of Cambodia is taking place after almost six decades, with the last being that of the current monarch's father in 1963.

King Sihamoni will be accorded a ceremonial welcome at the Rashtrapati Bhavan on Tuesday and President Droupadi Murmu will host a state banquet in his honour later that evening.

The King will also have bilateral meetings with President Murmu, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar and External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar.

He will pay floral tributes to Mahatma Gandhi at the Raj Ghat.

"India and Cambodia enjoy warm and friendly relations marked by civilisational, cultural and economic linkages and deep-rooted people-to-people ties. The multifaceted relationship is based on shared cultural values, commitment to foster economic growth, collaboration in the fields of defence and security and convergence on regional and global issues, " the Ministry statement added.

India has extended a grant of $1.5 million for purchase of demining equipment and has offered a line of credit worth $50 million line of credit for procurement of defence equipment from India.

Customised training courses are conducted for Cambodian army personnel in India and mobile training teams from Indian Army have been deployed to the Southeast Asian nation for training Cambodian personnel.

Trade between the two countries for 2023-23 stood at $366 million and is growing. Indian investments in Cambodia are estimated around $115 million primarily in pharmaceuticals, automobiles and mining.

In addition to this, India is also actively assisting Cambodia in capacity building and human resource development through training slots under the ITEC and scholarships under ICCR.

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