PM meets top EU leaders to boost strategic partnership

 Brussels, Mar 30: Prime Minister Narendra Modi today met top European Union leaders at the 13th EU-India Summit here to set out concrete priority actions for the strategic partnership in areas like trade and investment, climate, energy, water and migration in the next five years.

"Getting down to the nuts & bolts of diplomacy. 13th #IndiaEU Summit begins with a restricted meeting," External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Vikas Swarup tweeted.

PM meets top EU leaders

The Summit was followed by a working dinner which was attended by European Council President Donald Tusk and European Commission President Jean Claude Juncker. Presidents of European Parliament Martin Schulz & Investment Bank Werner Hoyer also joined the prime minister at the dinner.

After the talks, the two sides witnessed signing of a loan agreement for Lucknow Metro with European Investment Bank. The two sides are expected to adopt declarations on a water partnership and an energy and climate partnership.

The summit will also serve to enhance cooperation on counter-terrorism, research and innovation, the digital market and human rights, according to a statement issued by European Council President's office before the meeting.

"Discussions will focus on latest developments in the EU's and India's respective neighbourhoods. This includes the situations in Afghanistan, Pakistan, North Korea, Nepal, Syria and Ukraine," it said.

The leaders are expected to reaffirm the G20's key role in achieving strong, sustainable and balanced growth. They are expected to underline the importance of implementing the comprehensive agenda adopted at the last G20 summit, it added. The EU-India strategic partnership was launched in 2004.

The last EU-India summit was held in Delhi in 2012. The leaders are also likely to address the ongoing Free Trade Agreement negotiations with an aim to instil some political impetus to the stalled talks, the statement added.


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