(Eds: Updating with joint press communique)
New Delhi, Feb 5 (PTI) India and Monaco on Tuesday vowed to deepen ties in trade and investment, as well as collaborate on combating climate change, after Prime Minister Narendra Modi held wide-ranging talks with Monaco's reigning monarch Prince Albert II.
The head of state of Monaco, who arrived here on Monday, also held talks with President Ram Nath Kovind, who said the visit imparts a strong impetus towards taking the relationship to newer heights.
After the talks, it was announced that diplomatic visa waiver will be granted to Monaco for visiting India and officials from both sides will be working to finalise this agreement, a joint press communique on Prince Albert's visit said.
"Economic and technical cooperation are important facets of our existing bilateral relations. It was agreed that India's rapid economic growth offers an enhanced investment opportunity for companies from Monaco in various sectors. There is also scope for business cooperation," the statement said.
During the discussions, it was agreed that there is a vast potential for establishing linkages especially in the mutually beneficial area of infrastructure development.
The visit of Prince Albert provided an opportunity for the two sides to review progress in bilateral cooperation and discuss ways to further expand the multi-faceted partnership in areas of mutual interest, the statement said.
There was a good exchange of views on enhancing cooperation, especially in environment and climate change and renewable energy, through sharing best practices, Ministry of External Affairs Spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said.
India and Monaco established diplomatic relations in 2007, though their friendship goes back much further in time, he said on Twitter.
India and Monaco have shared interest in tackling climate change and use of ocean resources along with commitment for sustainable growth, the statement said.
The visit also demonstrated willingness of both sides to step up cooperation in renewable energy, urban affairs, including smart cities, environment and climate issues, it said.
Earlier in the day, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj called on Prince Albert and discussed opportunities for cooperation in areas of environment, specially renewable energy, investment into India, smart cities, marine ecosystems, tourism and people-to-people contacts, Kumar said.
Prince Albert, who is accompanied by senior officials of the Monaco government and a large business delegation, was hosted by President Kovind for lunch.
On Monday, Prince Albert attended the India-Monaco Business Forum.
The visiting dignitary will proceed on a private tour of India after his official engagements and leave for home on February 10. PTI ASK ASK IND