Mr. Christian Leffler, Deputy Secretary General, EEAS paid a visit to India on 7/8 November 2019 Mr. Leffler’s visit took place on the occasion of the second review of the Strategic Partnership between the EU and India, co-chaired with the Ministry of External Affairs. The meeting aimed at reviewing the entire scope of the bilateral cooperation, and to kick off the preparation for the next EU-India Summit, to be held in Brussels in the first half of 2020.
Mr. Leffler also had bilateral meetings with the Foreign Secretary, the Deputy National Security Advisor and the Chairperson of the Parliament Standing Committee on External Affairs, Lok Sabha.
In the Strategic Review meeting, both sides welcomed the current momentum in EU-India relations, based on converging priorities such as climate change, digital economy, the strong belief in multilateralism and the rules based international order.
The Strategic Partnership Review covered all areas of cooperation, from political and security matters, to sectoral cooperation in a number of fields such as environment, climate change, energy, transport, urbanisation, science and technology, digital, innovation, education, skills, mobility and the achievement of SDGs. The EU confirmed its support to the sustainable modernisation of India, fostering transition towards a green economy, renewable energy, sustainable urban development and effective water management.
The meeting also touched on the broad economic and trade bilateral agenda. The EU is the first trade and investment partner of India and more than 6000 European companies are established in the country. Both sides noted that there is much to do to unleash further the potential of the economic partnership, including by working together towards ambitious, balanced, comprehensive, and mutually beneficial trade and investment agreements. The EU side expressed interest for a Ministerial dialogue on economic and trade matters.
The EU and India believe in a multilateral trade system open and fair, with the WTO at its centre. As partners in the G20, the EU and India can advance together an agenda for successful inclusive globalisation, supporting sustainable growth and sustainable development.