EU-India Summit in New Delhi, 10 February 2012
Cooperation between India and the EU is vital for our bilateral relations and as a platform to address broader global challenges
President Barroso gave a speech at the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry, where he explained why the EU-Indian partnership is a key pillar of Europe’s foreign policy and international economic strategy. He also presented the benefits and opportunities of the EU-India trading relationship and outlined that, after fruitful and positive discussion with Prime Minister Singh, good progress with negotiations on the Free Trade Agreement were made. "The perimeter of a final agreement is emerging, " he added.
"Our economies complement each other in many ways and this overall complementarity is behind the positive trends in our bilateral trade and investment flows. Europe is India's largest source of foreign direct investment with a stock of 34.4 billion euros and India's investments in Europe are also fast reaching 7 billion euros. EU investment in India is bigger than that of the US and Japan combined," said the President.
"The EU-India Free Trade Agreement will be the single biggest trade agreement in the world, benefiting 1.7 billion people"
Following the signing ceremony of agreements in New Delhi today, President Barroso stated that the summit has contributed to enforcing the strong ties between the EU and India. "The European Union and India are the world's two largest democracies. Our shared values and strong commitment to representative government, good governance, human rights and the rule of law are an indispensable contribution to global stability and peace," he said.
President Barroso welcomed the signature of declarations on important areas, including energy and research. He also expressed determination to finalise the EU-India Free Trade Agreement (FTA) negotiations this autumn: "The EU-India FTA will be the single biggest trade agreement in the world, benefiting 1.7 billion people. It would mean new opportunities for both Indian and European companies. It would mean a key driver for sustainable growth, job creation and innovation in India and Europe."
"EU and India are strategic and natural partners that share the responsibility to address the most pressing challenges."
Ahead of the 12th annual EU-India summit in New Delhi on 10th February 2012, President Barroso said: "The EU and India are strategic and natural partners that share the responsibility to address some of the most pressing challenges the world is currently faced with. We have to capitalise on our long-standing relationship to benefit from the many opportunities offered in key areas, such as trade, energy, and research. An increased EU-India cooperation will not only foster growth in the short term in both our continents, but will also create conditions towards a sustainable and more inclusive development in the long run."
The summit agenda will cover bilateral, regional and global issues. The EU will be represented by European Commission President José Manuel Barroso and by European Council President Herman Van Rompuy. The EU Trade Commissioner, Karel De Gucht, will also attend the summit. The Republic of India will be represented by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Foreign Minister S.M. Krishna, Trade Minister A. Sharma and National Security Adviser, S.S. Menon.