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The EU and India are constantly working to deepen and broaden political ties.
Their longstanding relationship goes back to the early 1960s. The Joint Political Statement of 1993 and the 1994 Co-operation Agreement opened a broad political dialogue between both sides.
This dialogue has evolved through annual Summits, regular ministerial and senior-official meetings as well as expert gatherings.
In 2004 India became one of the EU’s strategic partners. Since 2005, a Joint Action Plan has helped to realise the full potential of this partnership in the following key areas:
The Delegation was established in 1983. Except for consular tasks, the Delegation of the European Union in New Delhi is functioning the same way as an Embassy does; it is a diplomatic mission representing the European Union (EU) to India together with the 28 Member States of the European Union. It performs a variety of tasks aimed at enhancing relations between the EU and India. Come and discover them on this website.
Celebrating Europe at Sixty
The idea of a united Europe is an old one, an idea of Empire and conquest. But Europe since the middle of the 20th century is radically different. From the ashes of the Second World War, the conviction emerged that the only way to unite countries was through a voluntary association based on the pooling of resources and the lowering of barriers between them. This idea was proposed by the French Foreign Minister Robert Schumann on the 9th of May 1950, a day that we now celebrate as Europe Day.
The next year 6 countries became the founding members of the European Coal and Steel Community. This was a political project in the guise of economic integration
The Treaties of Rome in 1957 brought together Belgium, Netherlands, Luxembourg, France, Germany and Italy in an economic community comprising a common market based on common external tariffs and the free movement of people, goods, services and capital.
As the project was realised over the next 60 years, it brought unprecedented peace and prosperity to citizens. Today, the EU with a population of 500 million is the largest economy in the world, and for its success in uniting peacefully so many countries it has been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2012.
Two further initiatives have strengthened coordination amongst EU Member States:
The EU's engagement with the rest of the world has grown as well. A common trade policy is the counterpart of an EU without internal borders, and the EU economy is one of the world's most open. Around 31 million jobs in the EU, or 1 in 7, depend on exports. With an annual commitment of € 55 billion, the EU and its Member States are also the largest contributors to development programmes and projects worldwide.
The Rome Declaration by 27 Heads of State and Government on March 25, 2017 has emphatically reiterated that the rationale for a Union is, if anything, stronger than it ever was: "Taken individually we would be side-lined by global dynamics. Standing together is our best chance to influence them and to defend our common interests and values".
The progress and growing prosperity of India is of course one of the most positive developments in this global dynamics. The EU and India are strategic partners since 2004. Our relationship, earlier restricted to development and trade promotion has evolved in breadth and ambition.
Following the last Summit meeting between Prime Minister Modi President Juncker of the European Commission and President Tusk in March 2016 we have made progress in many fields of cooperation: a water partnership, smart grids, solar and wind energy initiatives, waste management, public transport and air pollution. Many of these sectors could see investments from the private sector and financing from the European Investment Bank which has an exposure of over € 1.7 billion in sustainable infrastructure projects in India. In the IT and telecommunications area, the EU and India are collaborating on the joint development of 5G standards and the setting up of a platform to support digital technology start-ups.
A trade and investment agreement amongst the EU and India will benefit producers and consumers on both sides, and also bring in technology and capital for infrastructure, Smart Cities, Swachh Bharat, Make in India and Digital India projects.
With its rich traditions and its enormous entrepreneurial energy and idealism, India strikes a deep chord in our hearts. There are striking parallels between Europe's journey to sixty and India's to seventy. We have both had our critics and our doubters; but we have proven them wrong in the past and will continue to do so in the future, singly and together.
Ambassador of the European Union to India
The Section is responsible for political analysis and reporting as well as liaising with the Indian government on multilateral and bilateral issues of mutual interest to India and the EU. These include subjects pertaining to diplomatic and political relations -- with specific bilateral dialogues in the fields of human rights, security, counter-terrorism and visa/consular issues -- civil society and inter-parliamentary relations. In all matters relating to the EU in India, the Political Section works closely with the diplomatic missions of EU Member States. The Political Section also plays a key role in preparing the annual EU-India Summit, which takes place alternately in the EU and India. The section is also responsible for the identification and follow-up of projects covering India and its neighbourhood in the context of the Instrument for Stability.
The primary objective of the Science and Technology Section in the Delegation is to provide an interface for the relevant authorities in the Indian Government and the European Commission in this field. The Science and Technology Section is constantly in contact with the Indian research community and intervenes proactively in promoting Indian participation in the EU's Research Framework Programme. The Science and Technology Section is at the disposal of the research community in India to provide help and assistance to the degree possible. The Section sees a key part of its role as creating greater mutual awareness, trust and interest between the research communities in India and within the EU.
The Trade & Economic Affairs Section manages all activities related to the EU's trade policy. This comprises both the multilateral (World Trade Organisation -- WTO) and bilateral levels, including the negotiation of the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between India and the EU, and market access issues. It does so in close cooperation with EU Member States. This Section not only covers the entire range of trade-related issues, but also economic sectors such as transport, agriculture, finance or telecom, to name but a few. Regular contacts and exchanges with Indian institutions from the government to civil society also form part of its daily work. Not to forget one of the central functions of this Section, namely to monitor and analyse trade and economic developments of India as input to decision-making at Brussels Headquarters.
This Section includes a Head of Operations who oversees all aspects of development cooperation with India and Bhutan.
There are about 12 persons working in the team. The cooperation with India focuses on:
The section also manages regional cooperation and other thematic projects.
The Press and Information Section undertakes the communication activities of the Delegation. It is responsible for relations with the media and the public, reaching out to them through news releases, newsletters and pamphlets, and organising events to make the activities of the EU better known in India. It also maintains this website and is responsible for replying to all general requests for information about the EU, its institutions and this Delegation.
The Administration Section provides the support to the functioning of the entire Delegation. This Section is responsible for administrative matters, including personnel, infrastructures and administrative budget.
The European Commission’s Humanitarian Aid Department (ECHO) has a regional support office in New Delhi covering humanitarian assistance to the following countries: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Iran, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka.
The EU humanitarian assistance policy is a practical expression of the EU’s solidarity with the victims of conflict or disasters, both natural and manmade worldwide. The European Commission has a longstanding commitment to help the victims of such crises; providing relief assistance that goes directly to people in distress, irrespective of their gender, religion, ethnic origin or political affiliation. Working with humanitarian partners in the field, the humanitarian aid department swiftly supplies aid when disaster strikes and continues to help stricken regions after the catastrophe. Aid is delivered to the most vulnerable according to the humanitarian principles -- impartially, independently and neutrally whilst preserving the dignity of the most affected population. Since 1992, ECHO has funded humanitarian aid in more than 85 countries helping some 18 million people annually with yearly grants of more than €700 million. http://ec.europa.eu/echo/index_en.htm