India-EU summit rich in results, constructive and positive

| Thursday, March 31, 2016 - 20:39
First Published |
Narendra Modi and European Commission

The official says the summit produced a multitude of outcomes | Photo: IANS

Brussels: The 13th India-European Union summit, attended by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, was "rich in results, constructive and positive", a senior EU official said on Thursday.

Speaking to journalists here on the outcome of the summit held on Wednesday, the official who spoke on condition of anonymity, said that the summit "produced a multitude of outcomes".

The EU was represented at the summit by Donald Tusk, president of the European Council, and Jean-Claude Juncker, president of the European Commission, while Modi represented India.

The official noted that besides a joint statement, the summit between India and the 28-member European bloc released an EU-India Agenda for Action 2020.

(Also Read: PM Narendra Modi addresses Indian community in Brussels)

The summit also released four other joint declarations, including a common agenda on migration and mobility, on India-EU water partnership, on clean energy and climate partnership and on the fight against terrorism.

"The best description here is the 'new momentum' used in the statement on the EU-India strategic partnership. There is a clear political will from the leaders of both sides to make every effort to develop that potential fully," he underlined.

"There is not only good words and good intentions but there are also concrete projects," he stated.

The official noted that counter-terrorism was one of the subjects most discussed during the proceedings of the India-EU summit held after a gap of four years.

"The summit discussions were all constructive, but we did not necessarily have the same opinion on everything. But this was a meeting between friends and like-minded partners," added the official.

He, however, lamented that the ambition to re-launch the EU-India Broad-based Trade and Investment Agreement (BTIA) negotiations "was not fulfilled yet".

"But there was clear will by both sides that we will re-launch these negotiations and that the period of silence and stalemate is over", he said.

The official added that there will be an EU-India ministerial-level engagement probably in September in an effort to re-launch the free trade agreement negotiations which are on hold since 2013.

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