A Parliamentary Delegation from Bhutan led by Wangchuk Namgyel, Speaker of the National Assembly of Bhutan, called on Tuesday President Droupadi Murmu at Rashtrapati Bhavan, according to the press statement released by the President Secretariat.
As per the statement, "Welcoming the delegation, the President said that we deeply value multifaceted and unique friendship between India and Bhutan. The Government of India is committed to expanding its excellent bilateral cooperation with Bhutan, in accordance with the aspirations and priorities of the people of Bhutan. India is foraying into new avenues of bilateral cooperation with Bhutan such as Space Cooperation, Smart Agriculture, Youth and Sports, Start-ups, Renewable energy, and Digital Development, to help the Royal Government of Bhutan realize its vision of prosperity for all."
The President noted that this year Bhutan would graduate from the LDC group of countries and embark on the path of becoming a High Income Economy by 2034. She said that while moving forward on this path Bhutan would always find a reliable and trustworthy friend in India.
Earlier, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar met Wangchuk Namgyel in Delhi on Tuesday and discussed stronger economic cooperation between the nations as well as priorities of youth.
The EAM also interacted with the 13-member delegation of Namgyel and hailed the 'unique' friendship between India and Bhutan.
Taking to Twitter, the EAM wrote, "Pleased to interact with Wangchuk Namgyel, Speaker of National Assembly of Bhutan and his 13-member parliamentary delegation today. Discussed our multifaceted and unique friendship, especially ongoing reform, stronger economic cooperation, and the priorities of youth."
"Glad that the delegation would have an opportunity to see for themselves the huge changes in India over the last 8 years," the tweet read further.
The basic framework of India-Bhutan bilateral relations was the Treaty of Friendship and Cooperation signed in 1949 between the two countries. It called for peace between the two nations and non-interference in each other's internal affairs. The Treaty was revised in 2007.
The diplomatic ties were established in 1968 with the establishment of a special office of India in Thimphu. There are a number of institutional and diplomatic mechanisms between India and Bhutan in areas such as security, border management, trade, transit, economic, hydro-power, development cooperation, water resources, etc.
Bhutan shares its border with four Indian states - Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, West Bengal, and Sikkim with a length of 699 km and serves as a buffer between India and China.
The trade between the two countries is governed by the India-Bhutan Trade and Transit Agreement of 1972.
India is Bhutan's largest trading partner. India has constructed three Hydroelectric Projects (HEPs) in Bhutan: Chukha HEP, Kurichhu HEP, and Tala HEP, operational and exporting surplus power to India. (ANI)