Euro debt crisis can choke global economy: Krishna

Bilateral trade between India and Germany has crossed 18 b euro

Euro debt crisis can choke global economy: Krishna

India on Friday said the crisis in the European banking system could choke trade, finance and economic growth not only in the Euro zone, but across the entire global economy and called for expanding the resource base of multilateral development banks.

Addressing a joint press conference with his German counterpart Guido Westerwelle, External Affairs Minister S M Krishna said the sovereign debt crisis and banking crisis in Europe have grave implications on the global economy. 

“Europe is of particular concern as it accounts for a significant share of the global economy and it is also India’s major trade and investment partner,” he stated.He said there was a need to substantially expand the resource base of multilateral development banks so that they can help developing countries pursue their developmental goals. However, Krishna said, the bilateral trade between India and Germany has been growing steadily and in 2011, it crossed 18 billion Euros. 

In his address, Westerwelle said the German economy has been doing well. What Europe has been witnessing is not a Euro crisis, but a debt crisis. The Euro, as a currency, and the European economy are stable and successful. “But we have to work hard for the future of Europe and for the stability of the European currency... I am optimistic that we will manage the debt crisis,” he added.

Stating that Germany is India’s most important trade partner in the European Union and 150 German companies are active in Bangalore, he said his country is keen to further deepen business ties with India. 

“An important step would be quick conclusion of a Free Trade Agreement between the EU and India. We will continue to work on this,” he said.

Earlier, the two foreign ministers held talks on wide range of issues, including global financial crisis, reform of United Nations, terrorist threats and other issues of mutual interest.

On Iran, Westerwelle said: “We agree that Iran has the right to use nuclear energy for civil reasons, but it also has to fulfill its international obligations concerning transparency and nature of its nuclear programme.” Earlier in the day Westerwelle formally inaugurated the Office of the German Consul General in Bangalore. Located on the second floor of Cash Pharmacy building on Residency Road, the German Consulate office houses the state-of-the-art visa section, where citizens from the States of Karnataka and Kerala can apply for visa directly.  

Paperworks pertaining to visa application can be done and appointments booked online: www.bangalore.diplo.de 

The Consulate office has been functioning in Bangalore after its soft launch in September 2011. 

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