London: India and Germany will seek to take bilateral economic relations to new heights, when their leaders meet during the two-day Indo-German Joint Commission on Industrial and Economic Cooperation session beginning in Berlin on 18 September.
The meeting assumes significance as German Chancellor Angela Merkel is scheduled to visit India next month.
India’s Finance Minister P. Chidambaram and German Federal Minister of Economics and Technology Michael Glos will jointly inaugurate the 16th edition of the meet.
Chidambaram, who is visiting Germany for three days, will call on Horst Kohler, Federal President, and have bilateral meetings with Finance Minister Peer Steinbrueck and Edmund Stoiber, Minister President of Bavaria.
The Finance Minister will be accompanied by a top-ranking business delegation from the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI). Several of them have made investments in Germany.
The Indian business delegations are led by Sunil Bharti Mittal, CII President, and H F Khorakiwala, FICCI President.
India has a strategic partnership with Germany which has been strengthened by various high level visits from both sides.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh visited Germany twice in April last year for the Hannover Industrial Fair and in June this year for the G8+O5 meeting at Heiligendamm.
A number of other high level visits including from the
various state governments from both sides have helped deepen bilateral interaction. A number of business delegations have paid bilateral visits, helping to strengthen the trade and investment ties.
Indo-German trade has grown at a robust pace increasing by 39 per cent last year. Germany is now India’s largest trading partner in Europe with total trade of Euro 10.55 billion in 2006 and Euro 5.73 billion in the first six months of this year.
Two-way investment flows have also been showing steady increase in the last few years.
Chidambaram will speak on the topic ‘India at 60´ at the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung during his visit.