President Ram Nath Kovind on February 20 said India wishes to be a partner in Saudi Arabia's 'Vision 2030' as he hosted a banquet for the gulf nation's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman at the Rashtrapati Bhavan in New Delhi.
Welcoming the crown prince, who is on his first state visit to India, Kovind said India cherishes its cordial and friendly relations with Saudi Arabia and considers the Gulf region as its extended neighbourhood.
The ever-expanding scope of India-Saudi Arabia bilateral relations demands sustained strategic engagement and frequent interactions between the two sides at all levels, a statement from the Rashtrapati Bhavan said quoting Kovind.
The president said there is visible enhancement of bilateral trade over the past few years, while asserting that Saudi Arabia continues to be the most important source of energy for India, it added.
"We need to take the current buyer-seller relationship to a strategic level," the president said, adding that India wishes to be a partner in Saudi Arabia's 'Vision 2030'.
"We look at Saudi Arabia as a factor of stability in the region and beyond. India wishes to be a strong and reliable partner for the kingdom's growth and progress. Indian companies have invested and created jobs in Saudi Arabia, especially in the technology sector, which is India's strength," Kovind said in his banquet speech.
The president said terrorism is the gravest threat to humanity today and India, Saudi Arabia and the global community must come together to defeat and destroy these evil forces and combat radicalisation.
Those responsible for acts of terror need to be dealt with firmly and decisively, Kovind added.