New Delhi, Jan 29 (IANS) With Prime Minister Narendra Modi's anticipated visit to Israel this year, the Middle Eastern nation said on Sunday that to mark 25 years of its diplomatic relations with New Delhi, it is going to observe 2017 with "A Growing Partnership" as the motto.
"As we celebrate this historic day, we have chosen 'A Growing Partnership' as the motto for the entire year of 2017 to signify that our relations, and the celebration of these, are not bound to one specific point in time," Israeli Ambassador to India Daniel Carmon said in a statement.
"Our unique relations continue to grow as we speak, and our potential is endless," he said.
It was on January 29, 1992, that India established diplomatic relations with Israel -- 44 years after David Ben-Gurion, the head of the Jewish Agency, proclaimed the establishment of the State of Israel.
"India and Israel are two ancient people, proud of their cultures and respective history, two vibrant democracies, whose peoples are curious and eager to grasp the future. I believe that together, we can shape a better future for Israel, India and the world," Carmon said.
A statement from the Israeli embassy here said: "From security to food security, water, education, technology and innovation, India and Israel are permanently looking for new areas of cooperation."
Since the establishment of diplomatic relations, two Israeli Presidents, Ezer Weizmann and Reuven Rivlin, have visited India in in 1996 and 2016 respectively.
Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon visited India in 2003.
President Pranab Mukherjee visited Israel in October 2015 while External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj visited the Middle Eastern nation in January last year.
According to the External Affairs Ministry, from $200 million in 1992, bilateral merchandise trade reached $5.19 billion in 2011.
Though trade in diamonds constitutes more than half of bilateral trade, trade has diversified in recent years to include sectors such as pharmaceuticals, agriculture and information technology.
Major exports from India include diamonds and metals, chemical products and textiles.
Imports from Israel include diamonds and metals, chemicals, and machinery and transport equipment.
In its statement on Sunday, the Israeli embassy said that its government was in the process of finalising an initiative which would promote and fund programmes that would ensure the continued enhancement and expansion of mutual cooperation.