Strengthening trade & economy, the pillars of India-EU partnership

At the Diplomatic & Industry Leadership Session on EU-India Collaborative Economic Growth, Union Railways and Commerce & Industry Minister, Shri Piyush Goyal said that India is hopeful of working with the EU towards a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) in the near future.

October 7, 2020

The Minister called to strengthen the 3-R approach (re-energise, re-invent and re-orient) and to remove trade barriers between Europe & India

EU is India’s largest trading partner block, with US$105 billion trade in goods, and is the second-largest destination for Indian exports.

During the COVID crisis, India has helped supply medicines to the EU, while the Indian IT sector served European businesses without interruption

India and the EU have a long history of partnerships in technology, defence, railways, economic cooperation, etc

On October 7, 2020, Union Railways and Commerce & Industry Minister, Shri Piyush Goyal, addressed the Diplomatic & Industry Leadership Session on EU-India Collaborative Economic Growth. At the event, he underlined how trade & economy are the most important pillars of the India- European Union (EU) partnership, and that India is hopeful of working with the EU towards a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) in the near future.  

The Minister called to strengthen the 3-R approach being used by the EU & India: re-energise, re-invent and re-orient, adding it is essential to remove trade barriers between Europe & India. EU is India’s largest trading partner block, with about US$105 billion trade in goods in 2019. It is also the second-largest destination for Indian exports. 

The EU and India have had a long history of partnerships. Most recently, during the COVID crisis, India has helped supply medicines to different European countries, while the Indian IT sector continued to serve businesses in Europe without interruption. In July this year, at the India-EU Summit, the two parties agreed to renew an agreement on scientific cooperation for the next five years (2020-2025). Under the previous agreement, 73 joint research projects have been implemented, resulting in around 200 joint research publications & filing of few patents. In February 2020, Union Minister of External Affairs S. Jaishankar met top EU leaders in Brussels, and held talks on a wide range of topics, including terrorism, climate change, and enhancing multilateral economic cooperation. In January this year, the Governments of India and Finland signed a preliminary agreement to further defence ties, covering intergovernmental activities as well as private partnerships and investments. 

Less than a year ago, the Indian Union Cabinet approved an administrative arrangement on cooperation in railways between the Ministry of Railways, India and the Directorate General for Mobility and Transport of the European Commission. The agreement provided a framework of cooperation in rail reform and regulations, safety, signaling / control systems, infrastructure etc. These are only a few out of the many multilateral agreements between India and several countries in the EU. The way forward in trade and economy looks bright.