Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday wooed German business, assuring an open and stable environment in India to give a fillip to his ‘Make in India’ initiative, and said there could be a strong partnership between India’s Lion and Germany’s Eagle.
Modi also pushed for UNSC permanent membership for both countries, saying they have “earned the right”.
Addressing the media after talks with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, he said “I believe that there will be a strong partnership between the King of the Earth, Lion and the King of the Skies, the Eagle.”
Referring to his last visit to Berlin, when Air India One had stopped at Berlin enroute to Brazil for the BRICS summit in July, Modi said: “When I last came to Berlin, Germany was successful in winning the World Cup Final. This time in Berlin, I feel that we will also be successful in taking the strategic partnership between India and Germany to new heights.”
Modi’s stopover at Berlin clashed with the FIFA World Cup final. Merkel chose to watch the final, which Germany won after many years, over a meeting with Modi.
“My objective of coming to Germany was not only to invite the German industry to India, but to assure them that they would find an open and stable environment, which would be easy to do business in; and that they will have my full support to invest and work in India,” he said.
Referring to the India-EU Free Trade Agreement, Modi said he has requested Merkel that India and EU “should resume the negotiations quickly and conclude a balanced and mutually beneficial agreement at the earliest”.
He also proposed that both sides should increase cooperation in advanced technology and defence manufacturing.
On terrorism, Modi said: “We need a comprehensive global strategy to deal with this global challenge, in which India and Germany can work together.” He also proposed that both cooperate in the areas of maritime, cyber and space security.
“Earlier when we used to talk about terrorism, people used to say it is a law and order problem. Now they have realized how big a threat it is,” he said.
In an apparent reference to Pakistan, Modi said: “Pressure should be created on governments who give shelter to terrorists. If we can make this effort and isolate terrorists and people supporting terrorists…”
He also pitched for the United Nations to pass a resolution defining terrorism.
“There is a proposal pending for a long time where there is a need to define terror. I would request the United Nations to pass the resolution and define terror. Only then we can unite people opposing terrorism,” he said.
On permanent membership in the UN Security Council, Modi said: “It is my belief that India and Germany are two countries that have earned the right to be permanent members of the UNSC. Our membership will also be beneficial to the world. We both would like to see tangible progress in the United Nations Security Council reforms during the 70th Anniversary year of the United Nations.”
Answering a query later about UNSC reforms, Modi regretted that India was yet not a member of the council though the United Nations will complete 70 years of its formation.
Noting India had never attacked any other country and was the land where Gautam Buddha and Mahatma Gandhi were born, he said that “after formation of the UN, India is among the countries that has contributed the most to peacekeeping efforts and its contribution has been lauded”.
The joint statement referred to cooperation in the field of skill development, urban development, including in smart cities, railways, Ganga cleaning, renewable energy, education and science and technology.
“We agree that we strengthen our efforts towards carrying on negotiations for an ambitious EU India Free Trade Agreement with a view to its early conclusion.
“Our discussions in Germany have established a robust road-map for expanding our multi-faceted and mutually beneficial ties. We are confident that this will receive a further boost during the visit of the German Chancellor to India for the 3rd Inter-Governmental Consultations,” it said.
Earlier, Modi was accorded a ceremonial welcome at the Federal Chancellery where the chancellor was also present.
Later, Modi attended a working lunch hosted by her after which the two leaders held bilateral talks.
Modi later visited the Berlin Hauptbahnhof, the main railway station in Berlin. He later left for Canada on the final leg of his three-nation tour which began in France. (IANS)