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Bhutan PM arrives in India on five-day tour

04:51 PM Mar 14, 2024 IST | NE NOW NEWS
UpdateAt: 04:51 PM Mar 14, 2024 IST
bhutan pm arrives in india on five day tour
Bhutan's Prime Minister Tshering Tobgay has embarked on a five-day visit to India, marking his first foreign trip since assuming office.

NEW DELHI: Bhutan's Prime Minister Tshering Tobgay has embarked on a five-day visit to India, marking his first foreign trip since assuming office in January.

His visit, scheduled until March 18, is expected to encompass extensive discussions with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Droupadi Murmu, as announced by the ministry of external affairs.

Accompanying Prime Minister Tobgay are key officials from the Royal Government of Bhutan, including the Minister of Foreign Affairs and External Trade, Minister of Energy and Natural Resources, and Minister for Industry, Commerce, and Employment.

Additionally, Tobgay's itinerary includes a visit to Mumbai.

India and Bhutan share a longstanding bond of friendship and cooperation, underpinned by trust, goodwill, and mutual understanding across various levels.

The visit presents an opportune moment for both nations to assess the progress in their unique partnership and explore avenues for further enhancing their enduring ties, as emphasized by the MEA.

The timing of Prime Minister Tobgay's visit is significant, especially in the backdrop of ongoing negotiations between Bhutan and China aimed at resolving their longstanding boundary dispute.

India closely monitors these developments due to their potential implications for its security interests.

Notably, five months ago, Bhutan's then-Foreign Minister Tandi Dorji engaged in discussions with his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi in Beijing, reaffirming Bhutan's adherence to the one-China principle and expressing readiness to collaborate with China towards an early resolution of the boundary issue.

In August last year, China and Bhutan agreed to accelerate the implementation of a "three-step roadmap" to address their boundary dispute, marking a significant milestone in their negotiations.

This agreement followed a prolonged stand-off between Indian and Chinese forces in the Doklam plateau in 2017, underscoring the strategic importance of resolving territorial disputes in the region.

As Prime Minister Tobgay engages in substantive discussions with Indian leaders during his visit, the evolving dynamics of regional geopolitics, particularly concerning Bhutan's relations with China, will likely feature prominently on the agenda, reflecting the strategic significance of India-Bhutan ties in the broader Indo-Pacific landscape.