India, Kuwait ink agreements on education, culture

India and Kuwait signed three agreements on education, culture and science and technology during Vice President Hamid Ansari's visit to the nation in a bid to woo Kuwaiti investment and improve bilateral relations. Ansari on Tuesday emphasised the presence of a large Indian community as a vital aspect of bilateral ties at the Kuwaiti Chamber of Commerce. "It is particularly satisfying that they have acquired a reputation for hard work, efficiency and being disciplined and law-abiding," he said.

Underlining that India would be able to absorb $ 500 billion investment in the next 10 years for its burgeoning infrastructure demands, Ansari said, "The biggest opportunity is in infrastructure development where public-private partnerships are being encouraged."

Central to discussions between Ansari and Amir, the head of Kuwait, and the key ministers of the Kuwaiti cabinet were investments in fertilizer production and airport and port management. The pacts signed in soft sectors like education and culture are widely seen as sweeteners to Kuwait, where the ruling royal families have substantial stakes in business. Official sources claimed that the billion dollar investment surplus with Kuwait's investment body was a further attraction for India.

Ansari summed up his address with a hope for more sustained engagement between the two nations. "I am confident that the Indo-Kuwaiti relationship would blossom in the years to come," he said.

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