Trade top priority at EU-India Summit, say Conservative MEPs

30-Mar-2016 @ 01:00

Geoffrey Van Orden Geoffrey Van Orden

David Campbell-Bannerman David Campbell-Bannerman

Geoffrey Van Orden Geoffrey Van Orden

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi is making his first visit to Brussels today for the first EU-India summit for four years.

He will meet the Presidents of the European Commission and Council, the High Representative for Foreign Policy and the Trade Commissioner for discussions scheduled to last 45 minutes, followed by a working dinner.

Issues on the agenda include migration, climate, clean energy, a water partnership, terrorism and the stalled Trade and Investment Agreement.

Conservative MEP Geoffrey Van Orden, Chairman of the European Parliament's Delegation for Relations with India, met Mr Modi over breakfast.

The Eastern England MEP said: "Completion of the free trade agreement with India has taken far too long. Negotiations have been on and off for nine years now and I hope the visit of Mr Modi will at last accelerate the process. This is the top priority.

"We hope the summit will also produce a joint declaration on counter terrorism – both India and many of our European countries have suffered from terrorism and have much expertise in dealing with such challenges."

Also present at the breakfast was fellow Eastern England Conservative MEP David Campbell Bannerman, the Parliament's Rapporteur for the Free Trade Agreement with India.

He raised the trade deal during discussions and described Mr Modi's visit to Brussels as "a very welcome and positive step."


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