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India-EU Joint Statement on the 13th India-EU Summit, Brussels

March 31, 2016

The 13th EU-India Summit was held in Brussels on 30 March 2016. The EU was represented by Mr. Donald Tusk, President of the European Council, and Mr. Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission. The Republic of India was represented by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi.

The leaders strongly condemned the terrorist attacks in Brussels on 22 March 2016 as an unacceptable affront to our open democratic societies and extended their deepest condolences to the families and friends of the victims. The EU and India will remain united and firm in the fight against hatred, violent extremism and terrorism.

A stronger EU-India Strategic Partnership

  • As global partners and the world's largest democracies, the leaders reaffirmed their commitment to strengthen the EU-India Strategic Partnership based on shared values and principles.
  • They confirmed their strong interest in building global peace, security and prosperity, fostering non-proliferation and disarmament, creating jobs and inclusive economic growth, promoting sustainable development, and tackling global challenges such as terrorism and climate change in addition to other challenges such as migration and refugee crisis
  • To guide common work towards a stronger, result-oriented and mutually beneficial Strategic Partnership, the leaders endorsed the "EU-India Agenda for Action-2020” setting out a concrete road-map for the EU-India Strategic Partnership for the next five years.
  • They expressed their commitment to further strengthen the EU-India economic partnership. The EU’s Agenda for Jobs, Growth, Fairness and Democratic Change and India’s "Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas” – ("Collective Efforts, Inclusive Growth”) initiatives create new opportunities for mutually beneficial cooperation between people and businesses on both sides.
  • The leaders welcomed that both sides have re-engaged in discussions with a view to considering how to further the EU-India Broad-based Trade and Investment Agreement (BTIA) negotiations.
  • The leaders welcomed the European Investment Bank's (EIB) commitment to supporting long-term investment in infrastructure crucial for environmentally sustainable social and economic development in India. They welcomed a total loan of € 450 Million as a participation in the construction of the first metro line in the city of Lucknow, with the signature by the EIB and the Government of India of a first tranche of € 200 Million. The leaders welcomed the announcement by the EIB of the upcoming establishment, in New Delhi, of the Bank's regional representation for South Asia.

    Advancing Foreign Policy, Human Rights and Security Cooperation

  • Both sides expressed commitment to step up foreign policy and security cooperation and welcomed the outcomes of the Foreign Policy Dialogue held on 29 February 2016. They agreed to enhance consultation and cooperation in multilateral fora, on political and economic issues. They agreed to explore possibilities for development partnership and triangular cooperation.
  • Both sides underscored the importance they attach to human rights cooperation and expressed their intention to continue dialogue and enhance interaction in international fora, in particular the U.N. General Assembly and the UN Human Rights Council.
  • The leaders highlighted the need for efforts to ensure gender equality and respect for women and girls’ human rights, fight against gender-based violence, and promote their empowerment in all spheres of life.
  • Emphasising that the threat of terrorism is global and needs to be tackled globally, the leaders adopted a Joint Declaration on Counter-terrorism. The EU and India renewed the 2010 'Joint Declaration on International Terrorism’ and decided to step up cooperation to counter violent extremism and radicalisation, the flow of Foreign Terrorist Fighters, sources of terrorist financing and arms supply. They agreed to enhance exchanges on finance, justice and police and called for action against entities and States that sponsor or support terrorist groups.
  • The EU and India expressed their resolve to enhance security cooperation, building on and strengthening existing EU-India working groups on cyber, counter-terrorism, counter-piracy and non-proliferation and disarmament. They appreciated the role played by the Contact Group on piracy off the coast of Somalia, chaired by the EU in 2014-15, to revise the coordinates of the High Risk Area in the Indian Ocean Region. They reaffirmed the need to strengthen cyber cooperation and shared the view that the Internet should remain open, secure and interoperable and should be governed through a multi-stakeholder approach.
  • The EU and India expressed their confidence in the arbitration procedure on the Italian Marines case currently underway in the framework of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), to which India and Italy are strongly committed. Both sides will contribute to settling the case on this basis, enabling the cause of justice to be served for all those affected. The EU shares Italy's concerns to find an expeditious solution for the prolonged restriction of liberty of the two Marines. India stressed the need for rendering due justice for the families of the Indian fishermen who were killed.
  • The EU hoped for a swift solution, through the due process of law in India in the case of MV Seaman Guard Ohio, which concerns fourteen Estonian and six UK citizens sentenced to prison by an Indian court.
  • The leaders reiterated their commitment for a sustainable, democratic, prosperous and peaceful Afghanistan. They supported the ongoing efforts towards an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned process of peace and reconciliation, leading to an environment free of violence and terror. They welcomed the long-term commitment of the international community to Afghanistan in the Transformation Decade from 2015 to 2024 and looked forward to the Brussels Ministerial Conference on Afghanistan of 5 October 2016 with a view to renew a framework for international partnership and cooperation until 2020. They also looked forward to the sixth Ministerial Conference of the Heart of Asia- Istanbul Process in Delhi in 2016.
  • They reaffirmed their support to enhanced and broad-based regional cooperation in South Asia encompassing deeper economic and trade exchanges and progress on connectivity projects. They looked forward to the 2016 South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation Summit.
  • They agreed that a stable and democratic Pakistan is in the interest of the entire region. They underlined the key importance of the fight against all forms of terrorism, including through cooperation at regional level.
  • The EU and India pledged continued support to Nepal in its reconstruction efforts following the devastating earthquakes in 2015, including capacity building and long term development. They also agreed on the need for a lasting and inclusive constitutional settlement in Nepal that will address the remaining Constitutional issues in a time bound manner, and promote political stability and economic growth. They encouraged an inclusive dialogue between all political parties in the Maldives and reform that ensures respect for democracy, human rights and the rule of law.
  • Recognising ASEM (Asia-Europe Meeting) as an important platform for political dialogue, economic cooperation and cultural and social exchanges between Asia and Europe, the EU and India looked forward to the 11th ASEM Summit in Mongolia in July 2016, marking its 20th Anniversary.
  • The EU and India agreed to continue to exchange views on proliferation challenges. The EU and India condemned the DPRK’s nuclear test on 6 January and satellite launches using ballistic missile technology on 7 February 2016 in violation of its international obligations and expressed their commitment to ensure the full implementation of U.N. Security Council mandated measures related to the DPRK’s nuclear, WMD and ballistic missile programmes.
  • The EU and India welcomed the agreement facilitated by the EU High Representative on the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) regarding the Iranian nuclear issue. They welcomed the confirmation by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) that Iran implemented its nuclear related commitments under the JCPOA, paving the way for the lifting of the nuclear related economic and financial sanctions imposed by the UN, as well as those of the EU and US. They looked forward to the full and effective implementation of this historic deal, as a crucial contribution to the non-proliferation framework as well as improved regional and international peace, stability and security.
  • They expressed deep concern about the situation in the Middle East. The EU and India hoped that intra-Syrian talks, under the UN auspices, will ensure a Syrian-led and Syrian-owned political transition, bringing an end to the violence in Syria and contribute to stabilising the country and the region. Regarding the Middle East Peace Process, they called on parties to do their utmost to calm down tensions and prevent further escalation of violence and to engage actively in a process leading towards a comprehensive peace based on a two-state solution, as endorsed by relevant UN Security Council Resolutions, the Quartet Roadmap and the Arab Peace Initiative.
  • The EU and India expressed their commitment to enhancing their consultations and cooperation regarding Africa, with a view to optimising possible synergies between their respective initiatives and engaging in complementary actions to reinforce African capabilities and development processes.
  • The leaders underlined their strong support for a diplomatic solution to the conflict in eastern Ukraine through the full implementation of the Minsk Agreements by all parties in accordance with UN Security Council Resolution 2202 (2015).

    Growth and jobs through fostering trade and economic cooperation

  • The leaders recognised that a favourable business climate is key to enhance investments, to unlock the potential of EU-India trade relations and to support the ‘Make in India’ initiative. In this respect, the leaders reaffirmed their shared commitment to oppose protectionism and to work in favour of a fair, transparent and rules-based trade and investment environment. The EU welcomed India’s readiness to establish a mechanism to facilitate investments of all EU Member States in India.
  • The leaders praised the ongoing cooperation on technical and operational issues, including exchange of best practices in the field of Intellectual Property Rights and public procurement. They also noted the importance of geographical indications as a way to support local quality products in global trade.
  • The leaders acknowledged that trade in services is important not only for developed countries, but is rapidly emerging as a critical vehicle for developing countries for realizing development gains, including poverty reduction, and as the new frontier for enhancing their participation in international trade.
  • They encouraged EU and Indian businesses, including SMEs to deepen and support "Skill India”. The EU and India expressed their intention to organise a high level skills seminar before July 2017 and reaffirmed their commitment to the implementation of the G20 Skills Strategy.
  • They furthermore acknowledged that transparent, fair and ethical trade and investment are generators of sustainable growth, decent work and productive employment. In this context, they welcomed G20 discussions on issues of social protection as well as occupational safety and health also in view of promoting responsible supply chains including better integrating Micro, Small & Medium sized Enterprises (MSMEs).
  • The EU and India recognised the need to address environmental challenges and work together towards sustainable development, including through a circular economy approach to resource efficiency. They welcomed the upcoming EU funded Resource Efficiency Initiative project. Both sides acknowledged the importance of enhancing cooperation on environment issues, including on the ‘Clean India' and ‘Clean Ganga’ flagship programmes. In this context, the EU and India welcomed the Joint Declaration on the India-EU Water Partnership.
  • The leaders welcomed the successful EU-India ICT dialogue and ICT business dialogue. They encouraged increasing links between the ‘Digital India’ initiative and the EU’s ‘Digital Single Market’ through enhanced cooperation in cyber security, ICT standardisation, Internet Governance, research and innovation, (e.g. language technologies, establishment of a network of EU and Indian innovative start-up companies). They agreed to advance Business to Business cooperation through increased presence of Indian IT-ITeS companies in EU and EU companies’ active participation in the Digital India programme. They welcomed the prospects of, finalising a Joint Declaration on the next generation of global communication 5G networks in 2016.
  • The leaders welcomed the extension of the India-EU Science and Technology Cooperation Agreement until 2020, reaffirming their shared commitment to research and innovation as drivers of social and economic development. The EU and India aim to intensify their cooperation in frontier areas of S&T and in addressing current global challenges including health, and welcomed the setting up of mechanisms for jointly financing research and innovation projects.
  • Both sides welcomed the progress made on negotiating a Euratom-India agreement regarding research and development cooperation in the peaceful uses of nuclear energy. India and the EU looked forward to its early finalisation to enable both sides to significantly advance bilateral cooperation in this important area.
  • They welcomed EU-India cooperation on urban development including in the context of the EU’s World Cities programme and the EU-Mumbai Partnership. They agreed to launch an urban development dialogue and organise an Urban Forum, as appropriate, in cooperation with the EU’s Committee of the Regions.
  • The leaders committed to further strengthen the current EU-India dialogues in a wide array of sectors including pharmaceuticals, trade & industry issues, agriculture, fisheries, food and feed safety. They underlined the value of ongoing engagement on multilateral, macroeconomic and financial matters. The EU and India looked forward to the start of implementation, of their Horizontal Aviation Agreement.

    Global prosperity for coming generations

  • The leaders reaffirmed the G20’s key role in achieving strong, sustainable and balanced growth to the benefit of citizens and recognised the importance of implementing the comprehensive agenda adopted at the G-20 Summit of November 2015.
  • Both sides welcomed the adoption of the 2030 agenda for Sustainable Development and of the Addis Ababa Action Agenda and agreed to start a dialogue on their full and swift implementation at national, regional and global levels, aimed at identifying common priorities and future collaboration in these areas. They noted that the ongoing common work including on resource efficiency and circular economy was promising. Both sides recognised the need to ensure coherence and mutually reinforce the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030 adopted in March 2015 which underpins a risk-informed and resilient sustainable development agenda.
  • Welcoming the historic climate change agreement reached in Paris, the leaders agreed to continue to work with each other and with the global community towards the realisation of the goals of the Paris Agreement. They agreed to continue dialogue and cooperation, in the context of the Montreal Protocol on substances that deplete the ozone layer. The EU welcomed the initiative for an International Solar Alliance (ISA), launched in Paris on 30th November 2015. Both parties agreed to explore ways to work together to further the ISA's objectives.
  • They welcomed the excellent ongoing cooperation on a broad range of energy issues and called for an early meeting of the EU-India Energy Panel in order to continue joint activities in priority areas. They also welcomed the ‘Joint Declaration between India and the EU on a Clean Energy and Climate Partnership’.

    Enhancing citizens’ involvement in the Strategic Partnership

  • The EU and India highlighted the importance of contacts between their citizens. They welcomed the establishment of a Common Agenda on Migration and Mobility.
  • The two sides agreed to enhance cooperation in the field of cultural heritage (including its digitisation) as well as educational cooperation under the EU’s academic, youth and researcher’s mobility programmes Erasmus+ and Marie Skłodowska-Curie actions.
  • They welcomed the close interaction between the European and the Indian Parliaments and looked forward to the establishment of an EU Friendship Group by the Lok Sabha. They further recognized the importance of exchanges between EU and Indian civil society organisations, think tanks and local authorities and encouraged them to meet regularly.


EU-India Agenda for Action Plan-2020joint statement.pdf

Joint Declaration between India and the European Union on the fight against Terrorismjoint statement.pdf

Joint Declaration between India and the European Union on Clean Energy and Climate Partnershipjoint statement.pdf

Joint Declaration between India and the European Union on India-EU Water Partnership (IEWP)joint statement.pdf

Joint Declaration on a common agenda on Migration and Mobility between India and the European Union and its Member Statesjoint statement.pdf


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