Gentiloni-Modi pave way for mutually beneficial relations

Railway infrastructure, ship building and green technologies in focus

Business & Politics


October 30, 2017

/ By / Kolkata

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Indian PM, Narendra Modi with the PM of the Republic of Italy, Paolo Gentiloni, at Hyderabad House, in New Delhi (PC: PIB)

Indian PM, Narendra Modi with the PM of Italy, Paolo Gentiloni, at Hyderabad House, in New Delhi (PC: PIB)

Just ahead of French President Emmanuel Macron‘s visit to India in December, the Italian Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni’s visit assures India’s strong focus on building bilateral terms with the European nations.

The first visit of Italian PM to India in the last decade puts an end to the cold relations with Italy. The bad blood between the two nations started in 2012 with the Kerala incident involving two Italian marines killing two Indian fishermen. While India is looking at an enhanced business relationship with Italy especially in the industries such as leather, design sector, food processing, technology and defence manufacturing, Gentiloni is aiming to bridge the gaps between Italy, a G-7 member state and India.

India-Italy trade relations

After his arrival in New Delhi on Sunday, Gentiloni was received by the Minister of State for Tourism (I/C) and Electronics & Information Technology, Alphons Kannanthanam. Leading a 15-member delegation, Gentiloni held a detailed delegation level talk with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Indian officials at Hyderabad House, in New Delhi today. The focus of discussion was on strategic relationship enhancing economic and geopolitical cooperation.

According to the latest available data, Italy is India’s fifth largest trading partner in the European Union (EU) region. In 2016-17, the countries shared a bilateral trade amounting to USD 8.79 billion (EUR 7.55 billion). The various sectors include fashion, garments, textile and textile machinery, automotive, automotive components industry, infrastructure, chemicals, energy, confectionery and insurance, leading to  India housing over 600 Italian companies. Italy also has a large Indian expatriate population.

The Italian PM said his visit is going to re-launch Indo-Italian partnership. He said that in 2018, India and Italy will celebrate 70 years of their bilateral relationship. Based on common democratic values and a similar approach towards international order, Gentiloni said the two countries are ideal global partners.

“We want to strengthen existing links and forge new ones in many economic sectors,” said Gentiloni in an interview with a daily. The Italian PM is travelling with a delegation of 15 high-level entrepreneurs and business association heads from Italy.

Speaking about the Make-in-India initiative, Gentiloni said that the Italian companies that already present in India are part of the initiative. Railway infrastructure, renewable energy, green technologies, shipbuilding and manufacturing and the agri-food industries were the sectors that found a special mention.

On international security

Indian PM Modi in his meeting with the Italian counterpart discussed how terrorism is a common agenda for all nations fighting for peace. Gentiloni expressed how the fight against fundamentalism knows no frontier and stressed on the unity of all the nations against terrorism. He also mentioned the shared efforts of India and Italy when he mentioned the signing of the declaration on terrorism at the G20 Hamburg Summit. He mentioned the importance of culture as the key weapon to defeat all forms of radicalism and build a progressive society.

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