Indo-German government consultations
Commitment to strategic cooperation
Chancellor Angela Merkel and India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi have signed a number of agreements designed to step up cooperation between the two countries in the fields of business, research and vocational training. In Bangalore, Angela Merkel visited the vocational training centre run by Bosch India.
During her visit to the Bosch training centre, Chancellor Angela Merkel noted that what was unique was "the fact that the vocational school is practically integrated into the Bosch production plant, because there are no vocational schools as we know them in Germany". The software and innovative capacities of the Bosch development centre are excellent. "We would like to see many Indian companies learn from the example of dual vocational training, because we know how many young people here in India need high-quality jobs," said the Chancellor.
"Made in India" opens up opportunities
At the third Indo-German government consultations, the two sides agreed on the main points of economic cooperation. This is to include stepping up trade and investment, and partnership agreements covering production and skills acquisition.
India is Germany’s number one country in development cooperation, stressed Chancellor Angela Merkel. That is why the focus is on energy cooperation in particular, but also fields such as infrastructure, innovation and education.
In order to encourage bilateral trade and investment, Angela Merkel and Narendra Modi agreed to step up their strategic partnership, especially in technology-intensive production. Strategies like the "Made in India" initiative are to open up investment opportunities for German businesses in India.
The two sides expressed their commitment to achieving an extensive trade and investment agreement between the EU and India, and pledged to work to have negotiations resumed as soon as possible.
German engineering skills and Indian IT brilliance
Before the Indo-German business forum Angela Merkel spoke of the importance of economic relations between the two countries. "Here in Asia’s Silicon Valley, as Bangalore is sometimes known, the close cooperation between our countries is tangible. German engineering skills are paired here with Indian IT brilliance, and they complement one another perfectly," said the Chancellor.
"We are happy that medium-sized German companies in particular are welcome in India," the Chancellor stressed earlier in the day. Today more than 1,500 German companies already have operations in India. Once the Fast Track Agreement is signed it can be expected that authorisation procedures in India will further improve in future, and that the number of medium-sized German companies engaging in India will rise.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi stressed that the bilateral partnership could be an important force in the world at a time of radical change.
Creating security and a stable world order
In the field of international security too, Germany and India intend to consult and coordinate their actions to a greater extent in future. Both sides reaffirmed the need for an extensive reform of the United Nations Security Council, in order to address the geopolitical realities of the 21st century.
In particular Chancellor Angela Merkel and Prime Minister Narendra Modi advocated an increase in the number of permanent and non-permanent members of the UN Security Council. Each will support the candidacy of the other for a permanent seat in a reformed Security Council.
Both governments also support the ongoing efforts to resolve the Ukraine conflict at diplomatic level, and are working for the reconstruction of a stable and peaceful Afghanistan. They condemned every form of terrorist violence and demanded a political solution in Syria, as well as the achievement of national reconciliation and unity in Iraq through the creation of an inclusive governance system in the country.
Germany and India intend to step up the regular meetings of the joint working group on terrorism. Cooperation in the field of disaster relief management and bilateral cyber consultations are also to be extended, so as to strengthen cooperation in the field of civilian protection.
With respect to urgent migration matters, the two governments praised the role of international forums like the Global Forum on Migration and Development. Germany is to assume the co-chair of the Forum in 2017.
Focus on climate and sustainability
Looking forward to the UN Climate Change Conference at the end of the year, the Chancellor and the Indian Prime Minister affirmed their commitment to implementing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) laid out in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
Joint projects are to help develop climate-friendly, efficient, sustainable solutions to India’s growing energy demands in future. The German government is to provide an additional 1.49 billion euros for development projects in India.
Germany will also top up support for "green corridors" by a further 400 million euros. To improve access to clean energy in rural areas, Germany will provide an additional one billion euros in support for the Indian government, earmarked for a solar partnership.
"Digital India" builds cooperation arrangements
Another goal is to bring together Germany’s engineering strengths and India’s IT expertise. To this end both sides aim to expand business cooperation arrangements though the Digital India Initiative, which is to forge ahead with innovation in the fields of Industry 4.0 and the Internet of Things.
In future Indo-German partnerships in tertiary education are to be strengthened too, in order to foster research work and academic exchanges. To this end, German academics will, for instance, be involved in India’s Global Initiative for Academic Networks. The two sides agreed to extend the work of the bilateral Indo-German Science and Technology Centre beyond 2017.
Before the government consultations, the Chancellor met with Indian women executives. After the consultations, she met with President Pranab Mukherjee.