India, Canada to revive trade ties

By India Abroad News Service   |   Friday, 06 September 2002, 07:00 Hrs
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NEW DELHI: India and Canada will seek to infuse the old warmth in their ties during a two-day official visit by External Affairs Minister Yashwant Sinha to Ottawa on September 19-20.

This will be the first visit to Canada by an Indian foreign minister since 1995. Sinha's trip comes in the wake of a change in Canada's policy since last year when Foreign Minister John Manley announced a desire to normalise relations with India. Manley, who later became the deputy prime minister, also visited India.

Relations between India and Canada dipped following New Delhi's nuclear tests in May 1998.
A 160-member Canadian trade delegation headed by International Trade Minister Pierre Pettigrew came to India with the theme "let's get down to business".

"The Canadians are looking for some kind of cooperation in the science and technology field as a symbol of revival of contact between the two countries," an official said.
He said Sinha's visit might also open up a dialogue on cooperation in nuclear safety measures, which India and the U.S. have already initiated.

Sinha, who will be a member of Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee's delegation to the U.N. General Assembly session, will also pay a two-day official visit to Washington from Monday, his first as external affairs minister.

He will meet National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice, Deputy Secretary Richard Armitage and his former counterpart, Treasury Secretary Paul O' Neill.
A meeting with Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld was also being worked out.

They said the talks were aimed at finalising the agenda for the meeting between Vajpayee and U.S. President George Bush scheduled for September 12 in New York.

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