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April 10, 2013
New Delhi

PM’s statement prior to his departure for Germany

I will be visiting Germany from 10 to 12 April 2013 at the invitation of the German Chancellor, Dr. Angela Merkel, for the second round of India-Germany Inter-Governmental Consultations. This will be my third bilateral visit to Germany and our fifth bilateral summit since my first visit to Germany in 2006. I will be accompanied by Ministers of New and Renewable Energy; Science & Technology; Commerce, Industry and Textiles; External Affairs; and Human Resource Development.

The Inter-Governmental Consultations, first held in May 2011 in Delhi, provide a useful forum for discussions on the full spectrum of our relationship and have helped advance Indo-German cooperation in a broad range of areas. We attach high importance to our strategic partnership with Germany, which rests on solid foundations of shared values, centuries-old intellectual and cultural engagement, expanding opportunities for bilateral cooperation and growing convergence on international issues.

Germany is our largest economic partner in Europe and one of our key global partners for trade, investment and technology. I intend to seek greater trade and investment ties with Germany, as we continue to take steps to boost domestic investments, attract foreign investors and spur the economy back to its long term growth potential of 8%.  Germany is also a key partner for us in areas like infrastructure, manufacturing, science and technology, higher education, vocational training and clean and renewable energy. We expect to sign a number of agreements and Memorandums of Understanding in these areas.  I will seek Chancellor Merkel’s support for an early conclusion of a balanced India-EU Broad-based Trade and Investment Agreement. I will also propose that Europe keep its doors open to Indian investors and professionals.

Germany plays a key role in the global economy and, in particular, in stability and growth in the Euro Zone, which has an important bearing on the Indian economy. At a time of persisting global economic weakness and uncertainty, I look forward to discussing these issues with Chancellor Merkel.  We will also discuss our shared interests in United Nations Security Council reforms and a broad range of global developments, including with respect to Afghanistan, West Asia and the Asia Pacific region.
During the visit, I will call on the President of Germany, H.E. Mr. Joachim Gauck. I will also participate in the closing ceremony of the ‘Days of India in Germany,’ which was organized to mark the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between India and Germany. 

India remains committed to a close, cooperative and mutually beneficial partnership with Germany.