India-EU Virtual Summit: Strategic Landscapes to Trade Opportunities

by Saurabh Dwivedi - 16 July, 2020, 12:00 2832 Views 0 Comment

The 15th India-EU Summit via video conference was attended by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, EU Commission president Ursula von der Leyen, and EU Council President Charles Michel. The summit was mainly focused on bolstering the wide-ranging bilateral cooperation between India and the European Union in fields of trade, defence, investment, climate change among others.

PM Modi in his inaugural remarks pitched for embracing a long-standing strategic perspective relating to India’s cooperation with the EU, with the help of an action-oriented agenda that can be fulfilled within a designated time.

Addressing the summit, PM Modi stressed the long-term climate challenges shared by both EU and India saying that “apart from current challenges, long-term challenges like climate change is also a priority for India and the EU. In our efforts to increase the use of renewable energy in India, we invite investment and technology from Europe”.

PM Modi also reiterated that he views India as a “natural partner” of EU because New Delhi values “democracy, pluralism, inclusiveness, rules-based multilateralism and freedom”, adding that “during this COVID pandemic, India-EU partnership can play an important role in economic reconstruction and in building human-centric globalisation.
The EU leaders affirmed to strengthen the EU-India strategic partnership based on shared principles, delivering concrete benefits for the welfare of people in the EU and India.

The President of the European Union Council, Charles Michel said “As power dynamics shift, the EU wants to play a stronger role in Asia, and across the globe. Today’s dialogue with India & PM Shri Narendra Modi will reinforce & advance the EU’s strategic long-term goals”.

During the summit, leaders signed the Euratom-India agreement for partnership in research and development for peaceful nuclear energy. The digital economy and connectivity, based on human-centric and extensive digitalisation and sustainable, rules-based outlook to connectivity were also discussed. They acknowledged exploring multi-dimensional initiatives, comprising of a possible future all-inclusive connectivity partnership between the EU and India, and to pursue collaborations with third countries, especially in the Indo-Pacific region.

The views reflected in the article are the opinions of the author in a personal capacity and do not reflect the views of his employers.

Saurabh Dwivedi
Author is Programme Assistant at the Indian Council For Cultural Relations (ICCR), New Delhi, India.

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