Huge Scope of Furthering Indo German Relations – Steffen Builger

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In order to further the business ties between India and Germany following the recent meetings of Indian Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi and his German counterpart Chancellor Dr Angela Merkel, the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), in association with the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung (KAS), organized a Roundtable Meeting on the Trajectory of Indo-German Relations post Dr Merkel’s Visit on 27 October 2015 at The Imperial in New Delhi. The meeting was graced by members of both Indian and German Parliaments as well as business leaders from a diverse range of industries.

Welcoming the delegates, Mr Deep Kapuria, Chairman, CII Trade Fairs Council & Chairman, Hi Tech Group, said that the growing closeness between the two nations is evident from the recent meetings and signing of co-operation pacts on a range of subjects including technology transfer, clean and green energy, climate change, security and counter terrorism, etc. He informed the German delegation about India’s commitment to grow in an inclusive, responsible and sustainable manner by generating livelihood opportunities in rural as well as urban areas. Highlighting the India Prime Minister’s vision to render Indian manufacturing sector globally competitive through the Make in India mission, he identified Germany as a natural partner in this drive. He added that apart from a strong footprint of German auto companies in the Indian market, the recent years have seen the bilateral trade and investment between Asia’s third largest economy and the European powerhouse multiply manifolds. As part of the recent initiatives of CII to further global business ties, he mentioned the Global Innovation and Technology Alliance (GITA), a CII-DST (Department of Science & Technology, Government of India) joint venture, for developing research based partnerships between international companies.

Dr Lars Peter Schmidt, Resident Representative to India, KAS, expressed his enthusiasm for the roundtable and acknowledged the scope for closer ties between India and Germany.

Leading the German delegation, Mr Steffen Builger, Member of German Parliament and Chairman, Young Group, said that closer business ties with India present huge opportunities for India not just in the area of trading but also in research, joint development and production.

Members of the Indian delegation stated that opportunities of mutual benefit between the two countries must be sought with renewed vigour in light of the recent meetings of the heads of state.

Ms Bidisha Ganguly, Principal Economist, CII, made a brief presentation on the state of Indian economy and highlighted features such as a young nation, a robust services sector, high domestic savings and investments, continuously improving fiscal as well as current account deficits and foreign inflows, etc. demonstrating the inherent strength of the Indian economy.

During a brief interaction following the address, the delegates discussed the possibilities for closer ties through addressing the biggest obstacles. The German delegates emphasized the need to address the impediments to the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between the two nations. In his concluding address, Mr Deep Kapuria assured the German delegation of the renewed focus on the matter of FTAs by the Indian government following the recent high level talks and thanked the delegation for a vibrant discussion.

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