SPEECH BY THE PRESIDENT OF INDIA, SMT. PRATIBHA DEVISINGH PATIL AT THE BANQUET IN HONOUR OF THE PRESIDENT OF THE FEDERATIVE REPUBLIC OF BRAZIL, H.E. MS. DILMA ROUSSEFF
New Delhi, 30th March 2012
Your Excellency, President Ms. Dilma Rousseff,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
It is my great pleasure to welcome Your Excellency, on your first visit to India, which marks a major milestone in our relations. You embody the spirit of sacrifice and a fierce determination to succeed. Your election as the first woman President of your country was an achievement in which many women across the world took pride. Your commitment to democracy and to the development agenda is inspiring. We are, indeed, delighted that Delhi University, in recognition of the distinction you have achieved, has conferred a Honoris Causa degree on you. I congratulate you for that very warmly.
Excellency, India and Brazil share common ideals of democracy and rule of law as they seek to build just and inclusive societies. Brazil is an excellent example of a nation which is economically strong and culturally vibrant, pluralistic in nature, and respects diversity. We are confident that you will guide the destiny of Brazil, to even greater prosperity and, in the process, further strengthen the bonds of friendship between our two countries.
My first visit overseas as President was to your beautiful country four years ago in April 2008, during the tenure of your predecessor, His Excellency Mr. Luis Inacio Lula Da Silva. We watched with great admiration his untiring efforts in serving not only the people of Brazil, but also the people of the world. He is a good friend of India. We sincerely wish him speedy recovery and good health.
Excellency, your visit opens a new chapter in our relations. The relations between India and Brazil have evolved into a strong Strategic Partnership. The enhanced interaction between our two countries at all levels characterizes this partnership, which is rich in content, comprehensive and mutually beneficial. There are yet unlimited possibilities and significant untapped potential in the economic and commercial areas. We are happy that our countries have agreed to set a trade target of US$ 15 billion by 2015.
We are living in a world that is witnessing profound changes. India and Brazil as two large developing countries have shared values and a shared vision. We need to work together to ensure that the evolving international order is one that is based on respect for the principles of equality, justice and development; and one that respects contemporary realities. We believe this approach will strengthen an international environment where developing countries are able to express their voice in the world. We, in India, are truly pleased at the manner in which our two countries are maintaining close co-operation in multilateral arena, such as the UN and G-20 as also in BRICS and IBSA, in which our two countries are members. We are united in our common endeavour through the G-4 to see reform in the United Nations. We are also pleased that our abiding commitment to South-South Cooperation, is fostering close interaction amongst developing countries, to address common developmental challenges and inclusive growth.
I am confident that India-Brazil relations are poised to reach even greater heights in the years to come. I wish success to all involved in this process.
Ladies and Gentlemen, may I request you to join me in raising a toast:-
- to the health and well being of Her Excellency, Ms. Dilma Rousseff, the President of the Federative Republic of Brazil;
- to the enduring tradition of close and continuing co-operation between India and Brazil and;
- to the prosperity, success and happiness of the friendly people of Brazil.