Press Releases

April 12, 2013

Joint Statement on the Further Development of the Strategic and Global Partnership between Germany and India

1.       During the second round of Indo-German intergovernmental consultations held today in Berlin Federal Chancellor Angela Merkel and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh discussed the state of the Strategic Partnership agreed in 2000 and reaffirmed their commitment to further enhancing cooperation over a broad spectrum. They agree to continue with the successful format of regular intergovernmental consultations chaired by heads of government and with the participation of relevant ministers as well as to add as required other formats to the existing wide range of consultation architecture instruments. 

2.       The Indo-German cooperation opens up excellent prospects for developing both countries to the benefit of their peoples. Germany and India share the view that new initiatives in the area of trade, bilateral investment, energy, energy security, the environment, culture, education, training, research, technology and defence can catalyse and activate the great potential of their bilateral ties. 

3.       The Indo-German Consultative Group provides valuable input for bilateral cooperation. Both heads of government appreciate the intensive and productive work done by its members and are pleased that the Group is to continue its activities. 

4.       Germany and India are determined to further expand their cooperation in higher education, research and technology – dynamic core areas of the Indo-German Partnership – and to open up new and innovative areas of cooperation. To this end, Germany and India have agreed for a new jointly funded programme entitled "Indo-German Strategic Partnerships in Higher Education” (IGSP), which aims to intensify existing partnerships between German and Indian institutions of higher education. The programme will focus on establishing joint research projects that will include joint supervision as well as student and academic exchanges in this context.The Indian side appreciates the Dr Angela Merkel scholarships for Indian law students, 50% of whose funding comes from the Jawaharlal Nehru Award prize money received by the Federal Chancellor in 2011 and 50% from the Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst (German Academic Exchange Service – DAAD), as well as the German Chancellor Fellowship Programme, which will offer India an additional 10 fellowships a year. 

5.       Both sides expressed their appreciation over the current level of engagement between India and Germany in the fields of Science and Technology. The collaboration in the areas of Advanced Material Science and High Energy Physics enabled through Indian participation in the synchrotron facility at DESY and FAIR project in Germany was a significant element of this partnership. The implementation of industrial research and development projects through the binational Indo-German Science and Technology Centre was noted as another successful instrument of cooperation between the two countries. 

6.       Expressing their continued commitment to intensify and further enhance the level of Science & Technology collaboration, both sides agreed to launch a new strand of cooperation on Civil Security Research covering areas of mutual interest like natural disaster management; health outbreaks; urban security and protection and rescue of people through support of joint projects. 

7.       Both sides noted the recent opening of the German House for Research and Innovation in New Delhi. They expect it to give their cooperation in the field of research and technology a further boost. The two countries have agreed to jointly fund the Indo-German Centre for Sustainability (IGCS) established at IIT Madras. The activities of the Centre are directed towards building resilient systems in the face of climate change as well as enhance strategic knowledge in key areas of climate change. It will conduct research, technology development, training and knowledge dissemination including social and institutional barriers that can also help towards developing policy guidelines in a set of priority areas relevant to the changing climate system. The IGCS at IIT-Madras will host visiting scientists and researchers from German universities for four years under support by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research. The research projects to be undertaken at IGCS will be funded by the Department of Science and Technology, Govt. of India. 

8.       Both sides are pleased with the success of their vocational training partnership under the provisions of the Memorandum of Understanding signed between the two Governments on 31st May, 2011. In this context German and Indian companies are involved in developing practice-oriented training and supporting training of trainers on the basis of dual vocational training standards. The present cooperation will continue and be expanded on vocational training in key sectors such as setting up of an Advanced Training Institute as Centre of Excellence on Energy-Efficient Construction Technology and other Institutions of higher vocational learning. 

9.       With a view to promoting and intensifying personal contacts and intercultural skills, Germany is cooperating with India’s Ministry for Human Resources Development and the Kendriya Vidyalaya Schools (KVS) to support German teaching in Indian schools under its Schools: Partners for the Future (PASCH) initiative and its "German in 1,000 Schools” programme. 

10.    Both sides consider the "Year of Germany” in India and the "Days of India” in Germany an unqualified success. The programmes organized in this connection have built important bridges between our societies and contributed to mutual understanding. They have also been an important catalyst in enhancing awareness of the cultural diversity, academic achievements, technological progress and economic opportunities in both countries. 

11.    Both sides want to follow up on the great interest generated by the travelling exhibition Urban Mela with its "CitySpaces” theme – the core focus of the "Year of Germany” in India – by launching an Indo-German urbanization forum. This would enable topics such as urban planning, architecture, mobility, transport, the supply of goods and infrastructure to be discussed in a variety of working groups. 

12.    Close trade and investment relations are a core dimension of our partnership and of great importance for the development of both the Indian and the German economy. Both Governments will strongly back a further intensification of Indo-German business cooperation. Both sides would encourage cooperation in the field of rare earths on mutually beneficial terms. Both Governments recognize that expanding high technology trade and cooperation is key to deepening the strategic content of their relations. Both sides agree to consult regularly on advancing this objective and to this end form a High Technology Partnership Group including both government and business. 

13.    The Indian Government’s planned "Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor” (DMIC) offers ample scope for cooperation as well as a host of investment and business opportunities over the years ahead. During the Intergovernmental Consultations in May 2011 in New Delhi, vocational and educational training featured as an area of further co-operation between the two countries. India sought Germany’s cooperation in taking up a pilot project on skill development in the Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor. The new corridor planned between Mumbai and Bangalore likewise opens up interesting prospects for Indo-German cooperation. 

14.    Both sides emphasize that freedom of movement for business visitors and professionals is important for the sustained growth of trade and investment flows. Both sides agreed to work together to facilitate such movement between the two countries. 

15.    Germany and India recognize the important role that cooperation on electric mobility can play in reducing energy consumption, improving the environment, transforming industry and building an eco-friendly industrial society. They intend to support the sustainable and sound development of their electric vehicle production sectors by facilitating exchange and cooperation in the area of electric vehicle technologies, production and market development.

16.    Both Governments recognize that there is immense potential for cooperation between small and medium-sized enterprises in Germany and India. It is these enterprises that guarantee growth, innovation and jobs. Both sides appreciate the success of the Indo-German Manager Training Programme which links SMEs from both countries thus enhancing the understanding of the respective business culture. Both sides believe that joint research and development projects involving medium-sized companies and business-oriented research establishments in both countries are of great importance. Both Governments accordingly intend to promote through their national programmes Indo-German research and development cooperation activities by companies and research establishments aimed at developing new marketable products, processes and technical services. 

17.    Both sides agree to further intensify their exchange of views and experiences related to natural and man-made disasters. 

18.    Both countries underlined the importance of enhancing cooperation in the tourism sector and noted that India and Germany have significant potential for enhancing tourism traffic between the two countries. They agreed to encourage and facilitate the visit of tourists to each other’s countries. In this regard they requested tour operators, travel agents, hoteliers and airlines to participate in each other’s tourism fairs and events. India proposed to hold the 7th Joint Working Group on Tourism Cooperation between India and Germany in Delhi on a mutually convenient date. 

19.    Both sides recognize the role that norms and standards play in opening markets and see Indo-German cooperation in this area as beneficial to both the Indian and the German economy. They plan to extend their cooperation also to the areas of conformity assessment and product safety. Both sides accordingly agree to set up a working group on quality infrastructure. 

20.    Germany and India have a shared interest in the creation of decent jobs offering employee rights, social security and adequate protection in case of sickness as well as appropriate incomes as per legislative enactments of each country. They both want to see fair and safe working conditions. They are keen to continue their good cooperation at G20/ASEM meetings of labour and employment ministers and support the ILO recommendations on Social Protection Floors. Both sides also agree to share their best practices in the field of corporate social responsibility. 

21.    Both sides commend the energy policy dialogue under way in the Indo-German Energy Forum (IGEF), which is coordinated by the Indian Ministry of Power and the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology, as well as the opening of an IGEF Support Office in New Delhi. Under the auspices of IGEF an "Excellence Enhancement Centre” has been established for bilateral cooperation on sharing of best practices in the area of enhancing efficiency of thermal power plants. There are plans for private sector to participate to an even greater degree in the 6th Indo-German Energy Forum scheduled for the first quarter of 2014 in New Delhi. The ongoing policy dialogue between the relevant ministries will likewise be continued and expanded. This concerns in particular cooperation projects in the field of enhancing efficiency of thermal power plants, renewable energy and energy efficiency. 

22.    Since 2008 Germany and India have intensified their cooperation in the area of agriculture, food and consumer protection and are pursuing their dialogue in this connection in the bilateral working group. A new cooperation project is planned on plant variety protection and seed legislation by the working group to promote sustainable agriculture. 

23.    Germany and India note the urgent need to find effective and viable solutions to the pressing problems of climate change and its consequences for humanity. This includes mitigation and adaptation strategies designed to support the continued economic and social development in developing countries. 

24.    Both sides commend the ongoing cooperation between the two countries in these areas and are keen for it to continue. Both sides agree that issues relating to climate change protection should be discussed at the Second Indo-German Environment Forum planned for 2014 in New Delhi. 

25.    Germany and India look forward to continuing their successful cooperation in the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) context. Both sides agreed that this cooperation may be enhanced to facilitate preparation of a roadmap for CDM in future and design and support for nationally appropriate mitigation actions. 

26.    Germany and India reaffirm that they will continue their successful development cooperation in a spirit of partnership. Assisting projects with innovative approaches in the mutually identified priority areas of energy, environment and sustainable economic development support India’s inclusive development and poverty reduction programmes. It also contributes to achieving global development and addressing climate change issues. 

27.    Germany and India are committed to extending the role of renewable energy in their national energy strategy. Development of renewable energy is thus a major focus of bilateral cooperation. In this regard, the integration and evacuation of renewable energy into their respective national grids plays a pivotal role with major technological and physical challenges. To support India in addressing these challenges, the German government expresses its intention to assist the establishment of "Green Energy Corridors” in India through technical as well as financial development cooperation. They welcomed the commissioning of a solar energy project of 70 MW capacity in March 2013 at Sakri, Maharashtra in India with soft credit support from the German side. 

28.    Germany and India recalled their cooperation in the UN Security Council during 2011-12 and agreed to continue to collaborate in strengthening and reform of the United Nations and the multilateral system. In this context, they reaffirmed their commitment to continue their efforts through the G-4 to reform the United Nations Security Council by expansion of both categories of its membership, and underlined their support for each other’s candidature for permanent membership of an expanded Security Council. 

29.    As members of United Nations Human Rights Council, Germany and India will seek to develop mutual understanding of positions and encourage initiatives so as to promote and protect human rights. 

30.    By collaborating on joint projects, Germany and India intend to contribute to a stable and peaceful future for Afghanistan. In this connection both sides emphasize the importance of the regional Heart of Asia process, in which India coordinates confidence-building activities in the area of investment and trade promotion, activities which Germany supports. Both sides have further agreed to hold bilateral consultations on political issues, and social and economic development including cooperation in the sphere of trade and investment and capacity-building in various (economic) sectors. 

31.    Germany and India express satisfaction at the deepening comprehensive bilateral relations between India and EU and recognize that both India and EU, as long-standing strategic partners, are committed to working together to reinforce the relationship in all areas. 

32.    The leaders underline their strong commitment to a successful outcome to the EU India negotiations for a broad based, ambitious and balanced Free Trade Agreement that will generate jobs and growth in both countries and their hope for final agreement in 2013. 

33.    Germany and India will seek to intensify consultations within the G20 and strengthen the G20’s role as the premier forum for international economic and financial cooperation. 

34.    Both sides will therefore make strenuous efforts to achieve a consensus on trade facilitation by a balanced package of issues this year at the 9th WTO Ministerial Conference so as to ensure there is still a prospect of bringing the Doha Round to a conclusion.

35.    Both sides agree to intensify further their exchange of views and experience on combating terrorism as well as their practical cooperation in this connection, also in the Indo-German Working Group on Counter-Terrorism as well as multilateral forums. 

36.    Both sides are in favour of holding regular consultations on issues relating to international cyber policy. 

37.    In the light of new security challenges both sides are keen to intensify their security policy dialogue and exchange of views. Both sides expressed their keenness to enhance cooperation in the defence sector through dialogue and exchanges on matters of mutual interest, including in the area of defence technology collaboration. 

38.    Both sides recognize the importance of an effective national export control systems conforming to the highest international standards. Both heads of government want the bilateral dialogue on export controls and international export control regimes to continue. Germany welcomes the ongoing intensified dialogue between India and the various export control regimes (NSG, MTCR, AG and WA). Both sides agree to continue working together to prepare the ground for India to accede to the export control regimes as a full member and thereby strengthen the international non-proliferation regime. 

39.    Germany and India reaffirm that they will work together for a world without nuclear weapons, for universal and non-discriminatory global nuclear disarmament and a reduced salience of nuclear weapons in international affairs and security doctrines. Both sides agree to cooperate in strengthening global non-proliferation efforts. They noted the contribution of initiatives such as the Hague Code of Conduct against Missile Proliferation and the Proliferation Security Initiative during the last decades and the potential for advancing them in the future. Both sides support the IAEA’s Safeguards System including the Additional Protocol as the international verification norm. They participate in the discussions on a Draft International Code of Conduct on Outer Space with a view to its adoption as an agreed document of universal adherence. Both sides agree to hold regular consultations on disarmament and non-proliferation issues. 

40.    Both countries stress the importance of national and international efforts to reduce risks of nuclear and radiological terrorism. They reaffirm their shared commitment to promoting the full and effective implementation of the Chemical Weapons and Biological and Toxic Weapons Conventions and coordinated efforts to promote their universalization. Germany attaches high importance to the early entry into force of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty. In this context, India reiterated its commitment for its unilateral and voluntary moratorium on nuclear explosive testing. Both sides express their full support for a multilateral, non-discriminatory and internationally and effectively verifiable treaty banning the production of fissile material for nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices and call for the commencement of negotiations in the Conference on Disarmament. 

41.    Noting the recent talks in Almaty between Iran and the E 3 + 3, both sides stress the importance of a diplomatic resolution to the Iranian nuclear issue and urged Iran to fulfil all relevant international obligations and take the necessary steps to restore international confidence in the exclusively peaceful nature of its nuclear programme. They condemn the North Korean nuclear test conducted on 12 February as a violation of DPRK’s international commitments and call upon the DPRK to respect its international obligations as set out in several United Nations Security Council resolutions in this connection and to take urgent steps to deescalate the situation.

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