New Delhi [India], October 3 (ANI): The recent three-day visit of Colombian Vice President Marta Lucia Ramirez to India will further contribute towards strengthening and diversification of bilateral ties between New Delhi and Colombia, the Ministry of External Affairs said on Sunday.

Vice President and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Colombia Ramirez visited India from October 1-3. She was accompanied by Minister of Health and Social Protection Dr Luiz Fernando Ruiz, government officials, representatives of private companies and educational institutions.

Asserting that Colombia is an important partner of India in Latin America and bilateral relations between the two countries have been expanding, the MEA said: “The visit of Ramirez to India was preceded by the visit of Minister of State for External Affairs Meenakashi Lekhi to Colombia from 4-6 September 2021. The visit will further contribute towards strengthening and diversification of India-Colombia bilateral ties.”

On October 1, Vice President Venkaiah Naidu met Ramirez and exchanged views on bilateral cooperation in many areas.

VP Ramirez also extended an invitation to the Vice President of India to visit Colombia.

On October 2, Minister of External Affairs S. Jaishankar held a comprehensive bilateral dialogue with Ramirez.

Minister of State for External Affairs Meenakashi Lekhi also met Ramirez on Sunday with whom she had very productive discussions during her visit to Colombia last month.

Ramirez also held discussions with senior officials in the Ministry of Science and Technology as well as the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) on exploring cooperation in biotechnology, co-production and technology transfers in the development of vaccines and pharmaceutical products.

Later, two Letters of Intent for cooperation in the fields of biotechnology and medical research were signed by the Department of Biotechnology and ICMR with their Colombian counterparts.

Prior to the arrival of Ramirez, a 48 member delegation headed by Luiz Fernando Ruiz, Minister of Health and Social Protection travelled to Pune, Hyderabad and Bengaluru from 27-30 September and visited Indian pharmaceutical companies and Centres of Excellence. They also visited ISRO facilities and met representatives from New Space India Limited (NSIL) and the Human Space Flight Centre (HSFC).

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