Germany, India pledge to strengthen ties

7th October 2004, Comments 0 comments

7 October 2004 , NEW DELHI - German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder wrapped up a two-day visit to India Thursday saying Germany valued its strategic and lasting partnership with India. "There are interests we share and wish to pursue. We are committed to promoting partnership in every possible sphere," Schroeder said at a joint press conference with Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. Earlier, the two leaders held wide-ranging discussions, which included economic cooperation, support for each other's candid

7 October 2004

NEW DELHI - German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder wrapped up a two-day visit to India Thursday saying Germany valued its strategic and lasting partnership with India.

"There are interests we share and wish to pursue. We are committed to promoting partnership in every possible sphere," Schroeder said at a joint press conference with Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

Earlier, the two leaders held wide-ranging discussions, which included economic cooperation, support for each other's candidacy for a permanent position in the United Nations Security Council and elections in Afghanistan.

"India like Germany has the will and capacity to take on the responsibility of a permanent membership of the Security Council," Singh said, adding that India wanted to see a strong UN.

Schroeder made a similar statement during his foreign policy speech at the Rajiv Gandhi Foundation later in the day. Praising "problem-free" Indo-German relations, he said: "We are both supporters of multilateralism and are for strengthening of the United Nations and for reforms therein."

"We not only regard India as an important partner in the region, but in the international arena," he said.

The main focus of Schroeder's visit was to provide an impetus to trade between the two countries. He was accompanied by a 22 executives from German companies and Wednesday met with Indian business leaders.

Schroeder said at the joint press briefing Thursday that economic cooperation between Germany and India had not been explored to its full potential.

He said doubling of trade between the two countries was a personal commitment of the two leaders. Economic advisers of the two governments would keep in close touch, he said.

Earlier in the day, the German chancellor was given a ceremonial welcome at the presidential palace and layed a wreath at the memorial to Mahatma Gandhi, the peace activist known as one of the founding fathers of independent India.

Schroeder also held talks with Indian president A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, external affairs minister K. Natwar Singh and Sonia Gandhi, chairperson of the ruling United Progressive Alliance.

Schroeder travels to Vietnam on Friday and Saturday where he will take part in the fifth Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM 5). After separate talks with Vietnamese leaders, he will travel to Pakistan Sunday for a meeting with President Pervez Musharraf.

He is then scheduled to go on to Afghanistan, but there are reports that he may cancel this leg of the trip due to security concerns.

DPA

Subject: German news
 

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