German Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s visit to India from 25. The aim is to further improve bilateral relations.


First Published Feb 22, 2023, 10:04 AM IST

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz will visit India for two days. His tour will start on 25th of this month. He will be visiting India for the first time after assuming office to further enhance bilateral relations between the two countries and discuss the rapidly evolving geopolitical situation around the world.

He will visit India on the occasion of the first anniversary of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Olaf Scholz will visit Delhi and Bangalore during his stay in the country. On this occasion, ‘Asianet Newsble’ spoke to Manohar Parrikar-IDSA’s Europe and Eurasia Center Associate Fellow Dr. Swasti Rao.

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“It should be remembered that this visit is taking place on the occasion of the first anniversary of the war in Ukraine, which fundamentally changed the geo-political and geo-economic calculation of European countries. Germany and France were instrumental in shaping the larger European response to the war, as well as working within the EU machinery. India is on the top agenda for these two European players,” said Dr. Swasti Rao.

At the recently concluded Munich Security Conference, Scholz reiterated Germany’s commitment to increasing its defense spending. Germany’s involvement in India should also be seen in this larger European reset, she said, in the context of Berlin’s engagement in the Indo-Pacific region and joining the EU’s coordinated maritime presence initiative, which plans to increase its own role as a security provider in the region.

The German Foreign Office announced more deployments in the Indo-Pacific region last year. He said that this region is crucial for the development of blue economies and India and Germany can share many coastal countries for triangular cooperation on the development theme. Trilateral cooperation is one of the priority areas to enhance cooperation between the two countries in their latest IGC,” said Dr. Swasti Rao.

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Dr. Swasti Rao said that the chancellor was accompanied by a large number of business representatives during his recent visits to West Asia and China. This tour will lead to better financial relations and investments. This ushers in a new era in harnessing the true potential of the German-Indian partnership. India is another example of smart multi-alignment with internationally important institutions. It is also an example of strengthening itself economically and strategically in line with India’s status as a growing economic and military power,” she said.

“This attitude of India is being followed by major European powers. They understand India’s fast growing scale, its 1.4 billion population strength global status. Indo-German trade figures have improved over last year. But a lot of ground needs to be covered to increase mutual trade and investment. Dr. Swasti Rao stated that this visit is an important step in that direction.

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It is noteworthy that this is the first time that a German Chancellor has visited India since the biennial Intergovernmental Consultation (IGC) process began in 2011. After being elected Prime Minister last year, Prime Minister Narendra Modi went to Germany and met him personally. Since then there have been a series of visits from Germany to New Delhi.

Last Updated Feb 22, 2023, 10:07 AM IST


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