‘Future of India-EU Relations’ - Key Takeaways from India-EU Summit 2021

- FICCI, EU India Association and KAS India

The EU and India are strategic partners since 2004 and the "India-EU Strategic Partnership: A Roadmap to 2025” was signed at the previous summit. The Summit held on May 8, 2021 was based on cooperation for covid response and emphasised on the untapped potential in India and EU’s relations in areas of geopolitical, geo-strategic, connectivity, climate change, healthcare and crisis preparedness. In this regard, FICCI in partnership with KAS and EU- India Association organised a timely discussion on the first working day after the India-EU Summit 2021. The aim of the interaction was to present a holistic picture of India-EU global partnership built on shared values of democracy and inclusion. The interaction witnessed the presence of the Ambassadors, MEPs, industry and policy experts.

Key Highlights:

  • The renewed solidarity between India and the EU can help to drive economic recovery amid the Covid-19 crisis.
  • Inter- parliamentary exchanges and dialogues between elected representatives, industry especially young entrepreneurs and policy experts, are important to create synergies and promote cooperation.
  • The two sides agreed to renew negotiations on FTA and to address the issues on market access. Working Groups have been established on reforming WTO, addressing regulatory issues, and for promoting resilient supply chains.
  • It is also important to address the issue of cyber security, protection of personal data and privacy for facilitating safe and secure cross-border data flows.
  • India aims to reduce its carbon footprint by 33-35% by 2030 and hence it is important to cooperate on climate change, sustainable financing and investment.
  • India's stance on Aatmanirbhar Bharat is important to make India a leader in clean and green energy. India should collaborate with the EU in R&D to help provide low-cost energy.
  • Comprehensive Connectivity Partnership is central to Indian Foreign Policy and it can help to intensify digital partnership.
  • The EU has been focussing on connectivity w.r.t the Indo-Pacific region. The EU is a major stakeholder, trading partner and investor and wants to promote prosperity and security in the region.
  • The role of the private sector in promoting sustainable and transparent connectivity through private financing in energy, infrastructure, digital ecosystem and people-people connect, is crucial.
  • Multilateralism is important in today's world and to ensure dialogue in a multilateral and rules- based world, there is the need for sharing information and resources, promote academic and cultural exchanges, and enhance R&D and innovation.
  • The need of the hour is to promote investment through PPP, creating innovative financial systems, making business with the EU profitable for Indian industry.