India important for EU: Diplomats

India important for EU: Diplomats

“At the same time with a sizeable and growing market and a growth rate of around 9 and 10 per cent, India continues to be an important trading partner for the EU,” said BCIC President Shekar Viswanathan, in the presence of the Consul Generals of Switzerland and Germany.

Viswanathan further said that with the several rounds of negotiations being completed for reaching Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with EU since 2007 and almost 90 per cent of the bilateral trade in goods and services being covered under the pact. It is hoped that FTA will lead to increased market access in goods and services for each other.

Viswanathan added that BCIC has undertaken an initiative to sign an MoU with European Business and Technology Centre (EBTC) with a view to focus on areas such as clean energy, environment and transport.  

Indo-German trade touched around $22 billion in 2010, which was an increase of 18 per cent over the previous year. According to Consul General of Germany Rolf Saligmann: “One of the main supporting factors for the comprehensive and growing trade exchange is the wide spectrum of direct investment of German companies in India and Indian companies in Germany.”

Saligmann said in terms of investment in alternative energy sources the German government is prepared to support efforts of the Indian government to promote the same and to modernise transport infrastructure.

He added that the German Consulate General will be moving to its new premises in the “Cash Pharmacy” building in the City next week, and the target is to issue visas and render full fledged consular services by mid-july.

According to Consul General of Switzerland Rolf Frei, though Switzerland is not a member of the EU, its opportunities for cooperation with India are immense, especially in the realms of infrastructure, clean technology, life sciences, food processing, retail, ICT and so on.

The EU Delegation said that there is an aim to stimulate two-way trade and investment, creating new opportunities in areas of goods and services.  

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