Ulan Bator: Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said mineral-rich Mongolia could benefit from India's expertise and high growth while praising the Buddhist country as the new bright light of democracy in the world.
Modi, who was given a rare honour by Mongolia to address its Parliament on Sunday, a holiday, said: “I bring the greetings of your 1.25 billion spiritual neighbours. There is no higher form of a relationship; no bonds more sacred than this. We in India are honoured that you think of us this way.”
The Prime Minister said India and Mongolia are at important juncture because the two countries are celebrating 60 years of diplomatic relations and Mongolia is celebrating 25 years of democracy.
“Mongolia is the new bright light of democracy in our world,” Modi told the lawmakers at the State Great Hural – the Parliament here.
“Today, Indians and Mongolians are telling the world that the bonds of hearts and minds have the strength to overcome the barriers of distance,” he said, adding friendship between them will give lessons and hold lessons for the whole world.
He appreciated Mongolia's solidarity with India at UN Security Council and said their relations will work towards progress. “In turn, time and again, you have stood in solidarity with us, in the UN and elsewhere,” he said.
The Prime Minister said the 14 agreements signed between two sides today would enhance bilateral cooperation in areas including border security and cyber security.
He said a cyber security centre will be established for Mongolia's defence sector and announced the establishment of ‘India Mongolia Joint School' in Ulan Bator.
“We can seize the economic opportunities of the digital world and work together to make it more secure against growing cyber threats,” he said.
“At a time when the global economy remains weak, the world speaks in one voice that India is the bright spot of hope to become the new locomotive for global economic momentum,” Modi said.
He said that in less than a year, India's growth has rebounded to 7.5 per cent and it has emerged as one of the fastest growing major economies in the world and it has the potential to grow even faster.
“As the Indian economy adds strength to our region and the world, it will also benefit Mongolia,” he said.
Describing Mongolia's economic growth as impressive, Modi said, “Our bilateral ties will also grow, despite the distance and demands of geography.”
Mongolia's rich mineral resources can fuel the partnership, Modi said and hoped that location will not be a constraint on its right to choose its partners.