‘India-EU strategic convergence reflects our positions’

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Tuesday said that the strategic convergence between India and the European Union (EU) is reflected in “our positions” on key regional and global issues, including on Afghanistan and the Indo-Pacific.

New Delhi [India], September 8 : Speaking during the annual meeting of Romanain Diplomacy, the minister said Romania would benefit significantly from the expansion of India’s cooperation with the European Union. Terming India’s and Romania political ties “excellent”, Jaishankar said: “They (the ties) are very well serviced by our framework of agreements and mechanism. You can see we have regular contacts but I am sure we can do better.”
“It is our endeavour to grow this relationship further,” he added.
Jaishankar announced that India and the EU will begin formal talks on negotiation on Free Trade Agreement (FTA), this month.
Jaishankar dubbed India and EU summit on May 8 “landmark”, the minister said: “One of its (summit) important outcomes is the resumption of our FTA negotiations. Not just that, there has already been some progress in that regard. The formal talks start this month.”
The India-EU connectivity partnership is also important for its bilateral implications, its quality connotations and its third country possibilities, Jaishankar noted.
“We (India-EU) have also agreed to conclude early an investment agreement and one on geographical indicators,” he said,
“The strategic convergence between India and the EU is reflected in our positions on key regional and global issues, including on Afghanistan and the Indo-Pacific,” he added.
On 8 May, the EU and Indian Leaders’ agreed to resume negotiations for a “balanced, ambitious, comprehensive and mutually beneficial” trade agreement, and to launch separate negotiations on an investment protection agreement and another agreement on geographical indications.
They agreed to link trade negotiations to finding “solutions to long-standing market access issues”. Additionally, leaders agreed to set up a dialogue on WTO issues as well as joint working groups on regulatory cooperation and resilient supply chains.
The EU-India High-Level Dialogue on Trade and Investment was tasked with supervising the implementation of these decisions.

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