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Belgian royal couple arrives on seven-day maiden visit to India


New Delhi, November 6: With an aim of boosting overall cooperation between India and Belgium, with a focus on further ramping up trade and investment ties, King Philippe and Queen Mathilde of Belgium arrived in New Delhi. The Royal couple is on a seven-day visit to India.

King Philippe and Queen Mathilde of Belgium. Courtesy: @Belgiuminindia

This is King Philippe's first state visit to India after his ascension to the throne in 2013. He is accompanied by a business delegation of nearly 90 people comprising CEOs of Belgian companies.

The royal couple was received at the airport by Union Urban Development Minister and former diplomat Hardeep Singh Puri, according to an official of the Belgian Embassy.

India is Belgium's second largest export destination and the third largest trading partner outside the European Union.

According to official data, in 2016-17, bilateral trade amounted to USD 13.28 billion of which exports from India to Belgium accounted for USD 5.65 billion while imports from Belgium accounted for USD 6.62 billion.

The royal couple will travel to Agra tomorrow to visit the iconic Taj Mahal. According to the official schedule, the King will meet President Ram Nath Kovind and hold talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday. On Wednesday, he will attend an India-Belgium Business Forum meeting. On Thursday, he will leave for Mumbai on a two-day visit.

In Mumbai, he will attend a round-table of businessmen of the diamond industry and pay a visit to the memorial of the victims of the 2008 terrorist attack. He will also attend a conference which will focus on solutions for smart cities. The royal couple will leave for Belgium on Saturday.


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