India and Germany on Friday signed five joint declarations of intent and 17 memoranda of understanding after talks between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and German Chancellor Angela Merkel, PTI reported. Merkel is on a two-day visit to India.
Modi said the two countries had “vowed to build a ‘new India’ by 2022” and the expertise of technological and economic powerhouses such as Germany would be useful to achieve that.
“Our relations are based on democracy and rule of law, that is why we share same views on major issues of the world,” Modi said. “We will strengthen bilateral and multilateral cooperation to fight terrorism.” The prime minister said India was grateful to Germany for supporting its efforts to enter export control regimes. “Both countries will continue efforts and cooperation to reform United Nations, UN Security Council and international order,” he added.
The two leaders, who met for the fifth time this year, discussed a range of bilateral matters and the agreements in fields such as space, civil aviation, maritime technology, medicine, yoga, and education, NDTV reported.
“Twenty thousand Indian nationals are studying in Germany,” Merkel said, according to ANI. “We would like to see even more. When it comes to vocational training, we want to have exchange of teachers too. We intend to work very closely on sustainable development and climate protection.”
The chancellor said Germany would be happy “to engage in big infrastructure projects which India is envisaging”. Modi invited Germany to take participate in defence production in Uttar Pradesh and Tamil Nadu.
“Make In India is an endeavour we have understood since India was the host country at the Hannover fair, we seen that you are serious about this goal,” Merkel said.
A joint statement issued after the talks by both leaders called for a stronger international partnership in combating the “global scourge”. It urged other countries to work towards rooting out terrorist safe havens, disrupting terrorist networks and financing channels and halting cross-border movement of terrorists.
Modi and Merkel expressed concern about the inadequate global action on climate change. “Germany and India stress the need to undertake climate actions based on the principles of equity, and common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities, in the light of different national circumstances and agree to work towards further developing their respective NDCs [nationally determined contributions] as agreed in Paris,” the statement said.
Merkel, who has a packed schedule, began her day with a ceremonial welcome at the Rashtrapati Bhavan, where Modi greeted her. She then went to Rajghat to pay tribute to Mahatma Gandhi.
“I would like to thank the prime minister for the very warm and gracious welcome with which we have been received here,” the chancellor said ahead of the meeting at Hyderabad House. “This is my fourth visit to India and I look forward to the very interesting programme.”
Merkel will meet President Ram Nath Kovind in the evening and will later hold another round of talks with the prime minister at his Lok Kalyan Marg residence.