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Prime Minister’s Statement to the Press on India-EU Summit

His Excellency Prime Minister Reinfeldt

His Excellency President Barroso

Distinguished members of the media

 

It is an honour for me to welcome His Excellency Prime Minister Reinfeldt of Sweden and His Excellency President Barroso of the European Commission for the 10th India-EU Summit.

 

We have just concluded very productive and wide-ranging discussions. Our talks were held in a spirit of friendship and warmth, which is the hallmark of India-EU relations. An important outcome was the signing of the India-EU Agreement in the field of Fusion Energy Research. This agreement underscores the growing importance of energy security and clean energy in our cooperation.

 

We also reviewed the progress on the Joint Action Plan that was adopted in 2005 and agreed on measures to speed up its implementation.

 

India and the European Union have a Strategic Partnership based on shared values of democracy, pluralism, cultural diversity and respect for human rights. In this context, we reviewed the entire spectrum of our bilateral cooperation. We have identified trade and investment, energy, counter-terrorism, science and technology, climate change, and movement of peoples and as priority areas of our cooperation.

 

Despite the economic slowdown, I am happy to note that trade in goods and services between India and the European Union has doubled over the past five years to reach almost Euro 80 billion. We agreed to expedite the conclusion of a balanced and mutually beneficial Broad Based Agreement on Trade and Investment that will lead to increased economic opportunities and creation of jobs as well as wealth. I invited European businesses to increase their investments in India.

 

We have decided to forge stronger cooperation in the fields of science and technology, education and culture. I urged the European Union to facilitate movement of people, professional, business-persons, students, civil society and tourists through a friendly visa regime.

 

We also exchanged views on global and regional issues. We have agreed to continue to work closely on issues such as the reform of international institutions, the global economic and financial crisis, climate change and nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation. We agreed on the importance of a multilateral approach to addressing these challenges.

 

We reviewed the situation in Afghanistan and Pakistan and emphasised the need for concerted international action to combat terrorism. We have agreed to work towards early finalization of the agreement between EUROPOL and India. We also reviewed the situation in West Asia, Iran, Myanmar, Sri Lanka and discussed other regional issues.

 

I am satisfied with the outcome of our discussions. India looks forward to taking this very important relationship forward in all areas.

 

New Delhi
November 6, 2009



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