Europe’s largest economy Germany and Asia’s third largest economy India have a healthy bi-lateral economic relations despite the sluggish speed of concluding Indo-EU Free Trade Agreement. As Indian Prime Minister Modi’s most of the policies such as Make in India or Digital India, are focused on making India a manufacturing powerhouse – the free trade agreement will enable India to export world’s largest economically integrated zone. The recent visit of Germany’s chancellor to India was a significant moment in strengthening economic relations between both countries and Modi seems hopeful for getting more investments.
Here is a list of significant outcomes after Modi-Merkel meet:
- Investment worth €2 billion in clean energy:
The much needed boost for the renewable energy as India will get worth $2.25 billion dollar – 1 billion Euros each for India’s Green Energy Corridor and solar power projects. German expertise in renewable energy would also help India to combat global environmental issues effectively.
- German companies will get faster approval:
In a first of its kind of bi-lateral agreement, the two countries signed an agreement to fast track business approvals thus it will become easier for German companies to operate in India. It would probably provide single window for clearances of German companies that will help India to attract Germany’s world famous automobile industry to invest in India.
- 18 MoUs:
Both countries signed 18 MoUs which include diverse subjects as security cooperation, skill development and vocational training, solar energy partnership and many more. Apart from core areas both the countries have also agreed to boost partnership in defence manufacturing, fighting terrorism, radicalization, and trade in advanced technology.
- Support for Security Council:
German Chancellor has once again assured Indian PM for its continuance support for India’s bid for UNSC. She also praised India’s increasing intensified engagement with international export control regimes such as Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR) and Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG).
- German and Modern Indian languages will be promoted in each other’s countries:
HRD Ministry and Federal Foreign Office of Germany have together declared a statement regarding the promotion of German as a foreign language in India and promotion of modern Indian languages in Germany.
One significant symbolic positive diplomatic gesture (Symbolism plays a greater role in diplomatic games) played by the German chancellor as she presented a missing 10th century Durga idol to Indian PM Modi during her visit. Modi who is a firm believer in Indian mythological gods and carries his spiritual routine even during his foreign visits was delighted to see this gesture.
The decades long pending EU-India Free Trade Agreement is a major hurdle for Indian exports to European Union. In order to become a major exporting powerhouse, India needs to tap this market but EU agricultural and IT policy are major hurdles to complete it.