India-EU Relations.

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Angela Merkel renews push for India-EU free trade pact

A free trade pact with India has been a long-pending demand from Germany, India’s largest trading partner in Europe. The pact has been in discussion for years.


Updated: Nov 03, 2019 02:58 IST
Reuters
New Delhi
Chancellor of Germany, Angela Merkel, at the Dwarka Sector 21 Metro Station in New Delhi on Saturday.(PTI Photo)

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Saturday there was a need for a fresh attempt to restart talks on finalising a free trade agreement (FTA) between India and the European Union.

Merkel, who is in India along with several cabinet colleagues and a business delegation, began talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi on trade, investment, regional security and climate change.

A free trade pact with India has been a long-pending demand from Germany, India’s largest trading partner in Europe. The pact has been in discussion for years.

“We need a new attempt for an EU-Indian FTA. We were already close once,” Merkel said in New Delhi, adding that she held an intensive discussion about the FTA with Modi.

“With the new EU Commission, there will be a new attempt,” she said.

With more than 1,700 German companies operating in India, a free trade pact could help minimise the uncertainty experienced by German investors after an investment protection agreement between the two countries ended in 2016.

While addressing an audience at the Indo-German Chamber of Commerce, Merkel said she had an open discussion with Modi about problems faced by German companies and difficulties reported by small and medium enterprises to find way around the “bureaucracy labyrinth”.

In recent months German firms have raised a few other concerns, including slowdown in India’s auto sector, lack of stable policymaking and ad-hoc decisions which they say have affected buyer sentiment and created uncertainty among carmakers.

Merkel said Germany will spend one billion euros (nearly ₹8,000 crore) in the next five years on green urban mobility projects cin India over the next five years, including 200 million euros to replace diesel buses in Tamil Nadu state. “These diesel buses are to be replaced by electric buses and anyone who saw the pollution in Delhi yesterday would find very good arguments for replacing even more of these buses,” Merkel said.

Fresh funds pledged by Germany come at a time when pollution made the air so toxic in capital New Delhi that officials were forced to declare a public health emergency.Photos of Merkel’s official visit show the visible effects of smog at the presidential palace - though both Modi and Merkel ignored the declared public health emergency and did not wear masks.

Angela Merkel renews push for India-EU free trade pact
 

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Move follows govt. decision to pull out of RCEP; Europe sceptical about timeline
India and the European Union committed once again to restarting talks on a free trade agreement, but did not spell out a roadmap on how to break the six-year old logjam in talks.​
European officials also remained sceptical about how quickly the talks could be restarted, given a number of issues, including India’s decision to cancel Bilateral Investment Treaties with 58 countries, including 22 EU countries in 2016, and the Brexit process.​
“[India and the EU] underlined the necessity of having a Bilateral Trade and Investment Agreement (BTIA) and agreed to continue working towards it,” said a statement released on Saturday after a meeting of the India-EU Strategic Partnership Review, led by MEA secretary Vijay Thakur Singh and European External Action Service Deputy Secretary General EU Christian Leffler.​
The renewed push for the BTIA, which includes both trade and investment, follows the government’s decision to pull out of the ASEAN-led Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership last week.​
‘Prefers FTA with West’
Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal, as well as Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) officials have said that rather than the 15-nation grouping which includes China, India would like to explore FTAs with the West, including EU and the United States. Prime Minister Narendra Modi and German Chancellor Angela Merkel also pushed for the BTIA during their bilateral meeting on November 1.​
Speaking to The Hindu, Pekka Haavisto, Foreign Minister of Finland, who is the EU Council President this year, however, said that the deal could take a “long, long time”.​
In 2013, India and the EU suspended talks after reaching a dead end on issues such as tariff on European cars and wine, on data security, and India’s desire to include services and more visas for Indian professionals in the agreement. Since then, despite meeting several times, negotiators have not been able to even agree on the terms for restarting the talks, despite a firm announcement by Mr. Modi and the EU President at a summit in 2017.​
“Unfortunately the EU-India summit keeps getting postponed, so [one] step is to have regular summits.” Mr. Haavisto said.​
He also cited the ongoing Brexit process for delaying the EU’s other trade deals, but said that the EU had managed to close FTAs with China, Japan and the MERCOSUR Latin American countries.​
Another major problem, he explained, was that the NDA government’s decision to cancel investment treaties had slowed interest from European companies who did not want to “risk” investing until another investment protection agreement was put in place, which could be discussed at the next EU-India summit in March 2020.​
 
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Move follows govt. decision to pull out of RCEP; Europe sceptical about timeline

India and the European Union committed once again to restarting talks on a free trade agreement, but did not spell out a roadmap on how to break the six-year old logjam in talks.​

European officials also remained sceptical about how quickly the talks could be restarted, given a number of issues, including India’s decision to cancel Bilateral Investment Treaties with 58 countries, including 22 EU countries in 2016, and the Brexit process.​

“[India and the EU] underlined the necessity of having a Bilateral Trade and Investment Agreement (BTIA) and agreed to continue working towards it,” said a statement released on Saturday after a meeting of the India-EU Strategic Partnership Review, led by MEA secretary Vijay Thakur Singh and European External Action Service Deputy Secretary General EU Christian Leffler.​

The renewed push for the BTIA, which includes both trade and investment, follows the government’s decision to pull out of the ASEAN-led Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership last week.​

‘Prefers FTA with West’

Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal, as well as Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) officials have said that rather than the 15-nation grouping which includes China, India would like to explore FTAs with the West, including EU and the United States. Prime Minister Narendra Modi and German Chancellor Angela Merkel also pushed for the BTIA during their bilateral meeting on November 1.​

Speaking to The Hindu, Pekka Haavisto, Foreign Minister of Finland, who is the EU Council President this year, however, said that the deal could take a “long, long time”.​

In 2013, India and the EU suspended talks after reaching a dead end on issues such as tariff on European cars and wine, on data security, and India’s desire to include services and more visas for Indian professionals in the agreement. Since then, despite meeting several times, negotiators have not been able to even agree on the terms for restarting the talks, despite a firm announcement by Mr. Modi and the EU President at a summit in 2017.​

“Unfortunately the EU-India summit keeps getting postponed, so [one] step is to have regular summits.” Mr. Haavisto said.​

He also cited the ongoing Brexit process for delaying the EU’s other trade deals, but said that the EU had managed to close FTAs with China, Japan and the MERCOSUR Latin American countries.​

Another major problem, he explained, was that the NDA government’s decision to cancel investment treaties had slowed interest from European companies who did not want to “risk” investing until another investment protection agreement was put in place, which could be discussed at the next EU-India summit in March 2020.​
EU *censored*s are okay with millions of refugees swamping Europe but they dont want Indian professionals
 

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Understand India’s security preoccupations in Kashmir: Federica Mogherini

Published November 20, 2019
1574354239507.png

File photo : Federica Mogherini.

Federica Mogherini, high representative of the European Union for foreign affairs and security policy, told Dipanjan Roy Chaudhury in an email interview that the EU understands India’s security preoccupations in Kashmir and elaborated on the strengthening bilateral strategic partnership. Excerpts :

What is your opinion on India’s decision to make changes to Article 370 ?


I discussed the matter with minister S Jaishankar on several occasions. Our position has not changed. We understand India’s security preoccupations, but restrictions on fundamental freedoms remain. Some steps have been taken, but it remains crucial that freedom of movement and means of communication are fully restored, as well as access to essential services to all Kashmiris.

How do you view the efforts to revive negotiations on free trade agreement ?


The EU is the first trade and investment partner of India. More than 6,000 European firms are established in India. But there is much more that we can do to unleash the full potential of our economic partnership, including by working together towards ambitious, balanced and mutually beneficial trade and investment agreements. The EU and India believe in a multilateral trade system open and fair, with the WTO (World Trade Organization) at its core.

What is current state of India-EU strategic partnership in the context of India’s renewed focus on Europe ?


The strategic partnership between the EU and India is driven, as one might expect, by being the two largest democracies in the world. We believe in multilateralism and in a cooperative approach to international relations, with the UN (United Nations) at its centre. We are spearheading efforts to fight climate change, both in the global arena and in the way we are transforming our economies through renewable energy.. The EU and India are also at the cutting edge in innovation, in fostering the digital transformation which has the potential to open new frontiers for future generations. In short, the common agenda is broad and ambitious, but at the same time there is a lot of room to do more.

Can you tell us about India and the EU’s decision to form a military partnership and add muscle to counterterrorism ties ?


Our cooperation on security and defence matters has progressively expanded over the past few years. The first maritime passing exercise between the Indian Navy and the EU’s counter-piracy operation – Operation Atalanta – off the coast of Somalia was held in 2017. Consultations take place on counterterrorism, including on terrorist financing. The EU and India also hold a regular cybersecurity dialogue to exchange best practices.

What is the progress on India-EU connectivity partnership in Indo-Pacific and efforts to ensure rules-based world order ?


The way we choose to connect our societies, countries and regions will shape the 21st century. That’s why we need to do it in the right way. And with India, we have a natural partner.

Understand India’s security preoccupations in Kashmir: Federica Mogherini
 

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Poland could exit EU over judicial reform clash: top Polish court

Poland could exit EU over judicial reform clash: top Polish court
December 17, 2019, 1:51 PM GMT



FILE PHOTO: People gather during the "Chain of lights" protest against judicial overhaul in Warsaw
WARSAW (Reuters) - Poland could end up leaving the European Union because of plans by the ruling nationalists that would allow judges to be fired if they question the legitimacy of the government's judicial reforms, the Supreme Court said on Tuesday.

The court said the plans could contravene European law and exacerbate existing tensions between Brussels and Poland's ruling Law and Justice party (PiS).

"Contradictions between Polish law and EU law ... will in all likelihood lead to an intervention by the EU institutions regarding an infringement of the EU treaties, and in the longer perspective (will lead to) the need to leave the European Union," Poland's Supreme Court said in a statement.

The EU has accused PiS of politicizing the judiciary since the party swept to power in 2015. Pis says its reforms are necessary to make the court system more efficient.

Under draft legislation now before parliament, PiS aims to prevent judges from ruling that peers, nominated by a panel appointed by the party, are not independent.

"The Commission has a very clear position on protecting the judiciary from political interference," European Commission spokesman Christian Wigand told Reuters in response to the Supreme Court statement.

"The Commission continues to follow the situation closely. We remain ready and available to discuss with the Polish authorities ways forward to resolving the issues at hand."

The EU had said on Monday it would investigate whether the draft law undermines judicial independence.

The Supreme Court statement also said the proposed bill was "evidently" designed to allow President Andrzej Duda, an ally of PiS, to pick a new head of the court before a presidential election expected in May.

The current head of the Supreme Court, Malgorzata Gersdorf, is due to stand down in April. She was appointed before PiS came to power and has been openly critical of the party's reforms.

Gersdorf has called a meeting of all judges for March 17 so they can participate in the process of choosing the next head of the Supreme Court, court spokesman Michal Laskowski told a news conference on Tuesday.

Moves by Hungary and Poland to bring their courts and media under tighter state control have led the European Commission, the EU's executive arm, to begin rule-of-law investigations that could in theory lead to a suspension of their EU voting rights.

Brussels is considering tying adherence to the rule of law and democratic standards with access to EU budget funds.

Poland joined the EU in 2004 and public support for membership remains strong, despite the tussles between Brussels and PiS. Poland is a major beneficiary of EU funds for its farmers and infrastructure projects.

There is no mechanism for the EU to expel a member state. So far only Britain has chosen to leave the bloc, following a referendum in 2016. It is expected to exit the EU next month.
 

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India and the EU as partners for sustainable development: Taking cooperation to the next level
India and the EU are too big to think small and have the combined political and economic weight to shift the SDGs decisively closer to their goalposts.



The Strategic Partnership between India and the European Union (EU) has always evoked a mix of both high expectations and disillusionment. In a rapidly changing global context, the two partners occupy common ground as supporters of a rules-based, multilateral order. Yet, India and the EU have not truly managed to unlock the strategic potential of their partnership, which remains constrained by stalled negotiations of a bilateral trade and investment agreement. At the same time, both sides show genuine interest in moving their relationship forward. In its recently adopted strategy on India, the EU proposes the negotiation of a broader Strategic Partnership Agreement to promote sustainable modernisation, consolidate the rules-based global order, and address global challenges together. India, too, has become more open to creating new types of global partnerships – including with European partners – on various global challenges. The International Solar Alliance, co-launched by India and France, is a prominent example. Meanwhile, sustainable development has increasingly become a promising area for India and the EU to broaden and deepen their Strategic Partnership below the radar of high-profile foreign policy issues.

Sustainable development as a dynamic pillar of the India-EU Strategic Partnership
A new study published by the Observer Research Foundation (ORF) analyses the potential of increased India-EU cooperation in the field of sustainable development. The 14th India-EU Summit, held in October 2017, gave a strong political mandate to advance dialogue and collaboration in this area. The summit declaration expresses India’s and the EU’s commitment to enhancing cooperation for the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and creating synergies in their respective cooperation with other countries, especially in Africa. Since the phasing out of a regular, bilateral aid programme in 2014, India and the EU have left traditional donor-recipient relations behind and have embarked on a process to transform their partnership based on equality and mutual interests. This transformation comes with a broader perspective, evolving around the shared aspirations expressed in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and going far beyond development cooperation in a narrow sense. As part of this transformation, the two partners have launched various issue-specific partnerships and other initiatives on clean energy and climate change, urbanisation, water, resource efficiency, and clean air.

This year presents an opportunity to take stock of the India-EU development partnership and set the stage for a new phase in the decade from 2020 to 2030. While general elections mark politics in India and at the EU level, this year will also see other important decisions that are likely to shape the context of India-EU cooperation. The UK’s exit from the EU has implications for the EU’s relationship with India given the UK’s historical ties with India and its role as a leading development partner in South Asia. Moreover, the EU will decide on a new multi-annual financial framework determining how the EU finances external action from 2021 to 2027. Within this fast-paced political environment, the new ORF study aims to inform a strategic perspective on how India and the EU can advance their development partnership in the coming decade.

Completing the foundations
Reviving and updating the regular dialogue on development, which is currently dormant, is the basis for consistent interaction on issues of sustainable development. Thinking beyond a narrow and isolated dialogue format only for development cooperation, the ORF study recommends the establishment of an India-EU Platform for Sustainable Development. Such a platform would not only focus on development cooperation, but more broadly on the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). This format would provide a flexible structure, cutting across other existing and planned dialogues to mainstream the SDGs, manage inter-linkages, and integrate key principles such as the “leave no one behind”-principle. Involving a variable line-up depending on the issues discussed, the platform would integrate diverse stakeholders beyond the traditional sphere of traditional development cooperation, including key actors working on SDG implementation in India, the EU and other partner countries. NITI Aayog and the EU’s High-level multi-stakeholder platform on the implementation of the SDGs could inaugurate such a platform in 2020.

India and the EU could also expand the thematic coverage of their development partnership to include the most relevant issues with high political traction on both sides. With various issue-specific initiatives, the development partnership already covers important issues of sustainable development, such as clean energy, water and urbanisation. In addition, the study recommends the creation of two new partnerships. First, India and the EU could launch a Connectivity Partnership to create synergies between their emerging approaches in this field. In 2018, the EU published “building blocks” for an EU strategy on Euro-Asian connectivity, while India is moving ahead in crafting own connectivity initiatives such as the Asia-Africa Growth Corridor with Japan. Their respective initiatives in this field provide significant overlaps for cooperation. Second, India and the EU could establish a Partnership for Inclusive Economic Transformation. Achieving inclusive economic growth, industrialisation, and employment for its young population is one of the main challenges for India and other developing countries in the coming decade. Amongst others, such a partnership could set new priorities, including for education and skills in the digital transformation, social protection, and entrepreneurship and innovation with a focus on women and youth.

Adapting the toolbox of cooperation
The changing nature of the India–EU development partnership calls for new ways of working together. Moving the partnership forward, India and the EU can use a broader range of forms of engagement to leverage additional finance, enable inclusive dialogue, and share expertise and knowledge in innovative ways. Most importantly, received ideas about the incompatibility of India’s and the EU’s approaches to development cooperation (“EU aid” versus India’s South-South cooperation) should no longer restrain the partnership. Achieving significant development impact is increasingly less about managing aid or development cooperation and more about shaping new forms of cooperation that mobilise a wider set of actors, policies and means of implementation, including non-state actors and the sub-national level. India and the EU can further develop their toolbox for cooperation to achieve their collective development ambitions in the next decade. The study reflects on different ways how they can scale up development finance, create new forms of peer-to-peer knowledge sharing, engage in triangular cooperation, and upgrade their long-standing science and technology cooperation.

Setting the stage for a global partnership
While the notion of a global development partnership draws attention towards the growing potential for regional and triangular cooperation, the ORF study emphasises the continued relevance of bilateral cooperation as a basis for achieving global impact. Gradually expanding the India–EU development partnership to include other partner countries – especially in South Asia and Africa – will provide new opportunities. At the same time, the viability of such complex cooperation geometries will depend on how well they ensure ownership of partner countries and limit transaction costs. As next steps to strengthen the regional dimension of their partnership, India and the EU could initiate small-scale projects in multimodal cross-border transport infrastructure with partners in India’s neighbourhood. Moreover, common challenges faced by India, African countries and the EU in terms of economic transformation, industrialisation and employment constitute a strong rationale for expanding the development partnership to Africa. India and the EU could establish a triangular knowledge-sharing fund with African partners. Building on the proposed Partnership for Inclusive Economic Transformation, the fund could share Indian experiences with digital technology in the areas of financial inclusion, entrepreneurship, innovation, identification and social protection.

Managing expectations
The comprehensive scope of this study shows the vast potential of the India–EU development partnership. However, cooperation depends on a realistic understanding of opportunities and limitations. As a coveted rising power, India’s capacity to enter and maintain a growing number of global development partnerships is limited. The development partnership must demonstrate that it is not binding scarce capacity but adding new value. At the same time, a main message emerging from this study is not to underestimate the potential of this partnership. India and the EU are too big to think small and have the combined political and economic weight to shift the SDGs decisively closer to their goalposts. Calibrating the right level of ambition, the two partners can find more common ground, shedding limiting beliefs while keeping a pragmatic attitude.
India and the EU as partners for sustainable development: Taking cooperation to the next level | ORF
 

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Joint Statement - 15th EU-India Summit, 15 July 2020
  1. The 15th Summit between India and the European Union (EU) was held in virtual format on 15th July 2020. India was represented by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi. The EU was represented by Mr. Charles Michel, President of the European Council, and Ms. Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission.

  1. The leaders decided to strengthen the EU-India Strategic Partnership, based on shared principles and values of democracy, freedom, rule of law, and respect for human rights, aiming at delivering concrete benefits for the people in the EU and India. In today's complex world, they, as the world's two largest democracies, affirmed their determination to promote effective multilateralism and a rules-based multilateral order with the United Nations (UN) and the World Trade Organisation (WTO) at its core. They will bolster their cooperation in international fora to reinforce international security, strengthen preparedness and response for global health emergencies, enhance global economic stability and inclusive growth, implement the Sustainable Development Goals and protect the climate and the environment. In this context, the EU is looking forward to India’s G20 Presidency in 2022 and its membership in the UN Security Council in 2021-2022.

  1. As the world is fighting the COVID-19 pandemic, the leaders agreed that global cooperation and solidarity are essential to protect lives and to mitigate the socio-economic consequences of the pandemic. The leaders emphasised the importance of strengthening our preparedness and response capacities, of sharing information in a free, transparent and prompt manner, and of improving international response including through relevant international organisations, such as the World Health Organisation (WHO), drawing on lessons learned from the current global responses.
  2. The leaders noted mutual synergies in the field of healthcare through shared capacities, experiences and strengths in the production of pharmaceuticals and vaccines, healthcare research and development, diagnostics and treatment. They discussed prospects for global collaboration and sustained funding for developing and deploying and accessibility of effective diagnostics, treatments and vaccines to make them available to all at an affordable price. They called for the future COVID-19 vaccine to become a global common good. They agreed to intensify cooperation between India and the EU on health security and pandemic crisis preparedness and response, in particular linked to the COVID-19 pandemic. They underlined the importance of ramping up the manufacturing of vital medical supplies and of stepping up cooperation to ensure a continued flow of these supplies, agricultural products, raw materials and other goods and services across borders.

  3. The leaders agreed to further develop their trade and investment relations to unleash their full potential particularly in the context of post-COVID-19 economic recovery and support sustainable growth and jobs on both sides. They reaffirmed their commitment to work towards balanced, ambitious and mutually-beneficial trade and investment agreements, opening markets and creating a level playing field on both sides. They also agreed to establish a regular High Level Dialogue at ministerial level to provide guidance to the bilateral trade and investment relations and to address multilateral issues of mutual interest. The High Level Dialogue will aim at fostering progress on the trade and investment agreements, addressing trade irritants and improving conditions for traders and investors on both sides as well as discuss supply chain linkages. The EU and India agreed to keep the global trading system open, with the WTO as the bedrock of the rules-based multilateral trading system and to step up cooperation to preserve, strengthen and reform the WTO. Their cooperation should address today's challenges effectively, including post-COVID-19 economic recovery efforts with the objectives of a sustainable, socially just and resource-efficient economy. They will work together to make the twelfth WTO Ministerial Conference a success yielding concrete results in this regard. The leaders welcomed the G20 Action Plan to support the global economy and underlined the need to assist the most vulnerable countries. The EU and India will enhance coordination on global economic governance, notably in the framework of the G20. They will continue working together to promote debt sustainability, including in the G20.

  4. Resolute and coordinated action is key to tackle the generational challenge of climate change and environmental degradation. The leaders reaffirmed their commitment to the implementation of the Paris Agreement including with regard to nationally determined contributions in line with this agreement. The EU informed about the submission of its long-term greenhouse gas emission development strategy and India will strive to submit its own strategy, as nationally determined. The Leaders welcomed the ongoing cooperation between the EU and India under the Clean Energy and Climate Partnership. The EU and India will engage constructively in the global stocktake in 2023, the outcome of which shall inform the updating and enhancing, in a nationally determined manner, of the actions and support in accordance with the relevant provisions of the Paris Agreement. The EU and India will reinforce their cooperation in the International Solar Alliance (ISA) to promote the deployment of solar energy, and in the International Platform on Sustainable Finance (IPSF) to mobilise private capital towards environmentally sustainable investments. The EU looks forward to cooperating with the Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (CDRI) launched by India to ensure that infrastructures are resilient to climate change. The Leadership Group for Industry Transition, launched at the UN Climate Summit 2019, is an important initiative to tackle the climate crisis. They also agreed to work closely together in developing an ambitious post-2020 global framework to protect biodiversity, to be adopted at the 2021 UN Biodiversity Conference. High-level dialogue will support mutual understanding and the definition of a common approach on these issues. The leaders supported an ambitious mandate for an international chemical and waste management framework beyond 2020, for consideration at the fifth International Conference on Chemical Management in Bonn in 2021.

  1. The EU and India will enhance their partnership in support of sustainable modernisation. They will boost cooperation to support clean energy transition, resource efficiency and circular economy, and the necessary technological leaps, while opening new business opportunities. The EU and India will further develop cooperation on smart and sustainable urbanisation, information and communication technology, transport, space and health security. They agreed to jointly tackle water issues, air pollution, plastic and marine litter. Exchanges on research and innovation will be increased to further underpin progress in these areas. The leaders welcomed the continued fusion research cooperation within the ITER project.

  2. The leaders discussed ways to harness human-centric digitalisation to develop inclusive economies and societies. They agreed to enhance convergences between their regulatory frameworks to ensure a high level of protection of personal data and privacy, including through possible data adequacy decisions, with a view to facilitating safe and secure cross border data flows between them. The EU and India will upgrade their dialogue and cooperation on technology. They will engage on 5G and artificial intelligence including to promote global standards and to foster their safe and ethical deployment.

  3. The leaders agreed to jointly promote a transparent, viable, inclusive, sustainable, comprehensive, and rules-based approach to connectivity to ensure that projects are environmentally, socially and fiscally sustainable and provide a level playing field for businesses. They recalled in this regard the importance of the G20 Principles for Quality Infrastructure Investment and the G20 Operational Guidelines for Sustainable Financing. They agreed to explore concrete initiatives, including a possible future comprehensive connectivity partnership, to improve connectivity between the EU and India and seek synergies between their cooperation on connectivity with third countries including in the Indo-Pacific region. They welcomed the ongoing activity in India of the European Investment Bank and the upcoming planned investments of €550 million in the Pune and Bhopal Metro Rail Projects. The EU and India recognize the key role of the private sector and the importance of incentivising sustainable private financing.

  1. They reaffirmed their strong commitment to global peace and security, disarmament and non-proliferation and to combat terrorism in all its forms and manifestations, including its financing and countering radicalization. The EU and India will intensify exchanges and cooperation in this regard. The leaders agreed to launch a dialogue on maritime security and consultations on security and defence, and to enhance naval cooperation. They underlined the need to preserve safety and stability in the Indian Ocean. They welcomed the launch of negotiations on a working arrangement between Europol and the Central Bureau of Investigations to support law enforcement authorities of the Member States of the EU and India in preventing and combating organised crime and terrorism. They confirmed their full support to an open, free, stable and secure cyberspace, and their commitment to foster the responsible and liable behaviour of all the actors in the cyberspace. They underlined the need to increase global cyber resilience, including the health sector. The EU and India will continue to cooperate on international and regional issues of common interest including Iran and Afghanistan.

  1. India and the EU reiterated their commitment to human rights, including gender equality and women empowerment in all spheres of life, and the importance they attach to their cooperation. In this regard, they looked forward to the next session as soon as possible of their dialogue to be held in New Delhi and supported enhancing interaction in international fora, in particular the UN General Assembly and the UN Human Rights Council.

  1. Leaders welcomed active people-to-people exchanges including among students, researchers, professionals, business persons & tourists as part of the implementation of the Joint Declaration on Common Agenda on Migration and Mobility (CAMM). They noted the progress under the High Level Dialogue on Migration and Mobility (HLDMM) to streamline the movement of people in both directions in line with applicable migration and mobility rules. They also encouraged cultural exchanges and educational cooperation between India and the EU.

  1. The leaders adopted the “EU-India Strategic Partnership: A Roadmap to 2025” to guide cooperation between the EU and India over the next five years. They welcomed the signing of the Euratom-India Agreement on research and development cooperation in the peaceful uses of nuclear energy. They also adopted a Joint Declaration on Resource Efficiency and Circular Economy and welcomed the upcoming renewal of the EU-India Science and Technology Agreement for another five years. They agreed to reconvene for the 16th India-EU Summit in 2021.