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Why India should be excited about Angela Merkel visit

Speed News Desk | Updated on: 5 October 2015, 20:34 IST

Named the Forbes most powerful woman on Earth for the last 10 years, the longest serving EU head of state, German Chancellor Angela Merkel is definitely a name to be reckoned with.

Apart from being called the 'Decider' in the European Union, Merkel has played a vital role in management of the Greek financial crisis, the ongoing refugee crisis and obviously her capability to deal with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Merkel is in India on a three-day visit to participate in the third Indo-German inter-governmental consultations hosted by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

She is meeting Modi for the second time; he visited Germany in April this year. The main agenda of the visit is improving trade ties between the two countries.

The visit is also important because although Germany is India's most important trading partner in EU, and the two countries exchanged €16 billion ($17.9 billion) in trade in 2014, the figure has been declining for the past three years.

Here are the reasons why the visit is important for India

  • The two countries have signed 18 MoUs related to higher education, civil aviation, railways and food safety.

  • The nations have also signed a deal to fast-track business approvals.

  • Germany will provide assistance of 2.25 billion Euros to help India improve its clean energy sector.

  • The two countries may sign an India-EU Free Trade Agreement negotiations a market-opening pact to boost commerce.

  • The leaders will discuss issues related to skill development, vocational training that can help India get its much needed skilled work force.

  • Germany is looking to set up industries in India and this can give a big boost to Make in India campaign ensuring employment and economic growth of the country.

  • Germany is India's 8th largest foreign direct investor since 2000. German FDI during the period 1991-February 2015, was valued at US$ 8.25 billion. The meet can hike the figures up.

First published: 5 October 2015, 20:38 IST