India, EU to enhance trade, security ties; ink three key pacts

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As regards global challenges of mutual interest, leaders will discuss the implementation of the Paris Agreement and the Sustainable Development Goals, effectively addressing migration and refugee challenges, as well as pressing issues such as the situation in the Korean Peninsula, Myanmar, eastern Ukraine, Afghanistan, and cooperation between the European Union and India in the Indian Ocean and in Africa.

EU-India FTA talks had started a decade ago.

Leaders from India and the European Union began talks at a summit Friday amid hopes that negotiations on a free trade agreement could be revived soon.

At the invitation of the Prime Minister Narendra Modi, President of the European Council along with President of the European Commission are in New Delhi for a three-day visit (from 5- 7 October) to attend the14th EU-India Summit 2017 on Friday.

The 14th India-EU Summit is being held in the national capital.

The 28-nation bloc is Indias largest regional trading partner with bilateral trade in goods at Dollars 88 billion in 2016.

The Prime Minister said both sides agreed to cooperate on global issues and work together on climate change.

"We agreed on fighting against terrorism together and increasing cooperation towards it. We will not only further strengthen our bilateral cooperation on this issue, but will also increase our cooperation and coordination in multilateral fora". Donald Tusk and Jean-Claude Juncker also called on External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj. India reportedly imported goods worth €37.8 billion in 2016.

India received around Dollars 83 billion of foreign direct investment from Europe during 2000-17, constituting approximately 24 per cent of total FDI inflows into the country during the period, said Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Raveesh Kumar.

Almost a year after Theresa May visited India to lay the foundations for future business deals, Brussels has launched an offensive in a desperate bid to muscle in and thrash out an agreement of its own. "Our multi-dimensional relations and strategic partnership is of prime importance", the Indian prime minister said, hailing the European Union countries for continuing to be India's largest trading partner.

The free trade agreement is to cover market access in goods, services and public procurement, as well as create a framework for investment protection, intellectual property and competition.

India and the 28-nation bloc have also chose to boost cooperation on maritime security in the Indian Ocean and beyond which, according to Tusk, will lead to enhanced military cooperation between them.

He also welcomed the resumption of tactical exercise in the Gulf of Aden between EUs Naval Force Atlanta and the Indian Navy.

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