On 28 May, the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy/Vice-President of the European Commission, Josep Borrell, had a videoconference with the Indian Minister of External Relations, Subrahmanyam Jaishankar. The main topics of their conversation were the response to the coronavirus pandemic and preparations for the 15th EU-India Summit, which had been postponed in March due to the outbreak of the virus.
High Representative/Vice-President Borrell and Minister Jaishankar confirmed the commitment of both the EU and India to work together to overcome the global pandemic and stressed the importance of an effective global socio-economic recovery. High Representative Borrell thanked Minister Jaishankar for the Indian Government’s assistance in facilitating the repatriation of over 11,000 EU tourists from India. They agreed on the need to ensure the flow of crucial medical supplies, and on keeping global trade and value chains open.
Josep Borrell and Subrahmanyam Jaishankar agreed that the current pandemic made the EU-India Strategic Partnership even more relevant. This was true in terms of joining efforts to strengthen the multilateral system, as well as in further developing the bilateral relationship, including trade and investment and security cooperation.
Following earlier calls between the Presidents of the European Council and European Commission with the Indian Prime Minister, High Representative Borrell and Minister Jaishankar discussed preparations for the EU-India Summit, which will be held as soon as possible. They looked forward to the Summit as an important opportunity to advance on all aspects of the EU-India relationship. They also discussed relevant foreign policy topics, including Afghanistan, China, and Iran.