Monday, August 15, 2022

PM leaves for Germany for G-7 summit

The bilateral meeting with the Canadian Prime Minister is the first since 2018, and follows a stagnation in relations over agrarian protests.

The bilateral meeting with the Canadian Prime Minister is the first since 2018, and follows a stagnation in relations over agrarian protests.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will seek a resumption of ties in bilateral talks on the sidelines of the G-7 summit in Germany on June 26-27, their first in four years since Mr. Trudeau. Such is the meeting. India trip in 2018.

Relations were strained in 2020, due to Mr Trudeau’s comments on farmers’ protests in 2020, which India strongly opposed, and canceled official meetings, but New Delhi and Ottawa are working together in several countries. are. In an effort to get relations back on track, especially over a trade deal.

The two leaders, who will be during the summit at the Bavarian resort of Schloss Elmau, where India is one of the special invitees, met briefly during the G-20 summit in Rome in October 2021, and three times over the telephone during this time. Had talked. Epidemic.

In his departure statement on Saturday, Mr Modi, who will be in Germany on Sunday, and then visit the United Arab Emirates on Tuesday, said he would intervene during the special session on “current issues like environment, energy”. Climate, food security, health, counter terrorism, gender equality and democracy. “I look forward to meeting the leaders of some of the G-7 and visiting countries participating in the summit,” he said.

Mr Modi will fly to Munich on Sunday and attend an Indian expatriate community event, after which he will be taken by helicopter to Schloss Elmau. A meeting with Argentine President Alberto Fernandez and Bavarian Minister-President Marcus Thomas Theodor Söder is also scheduled for Sunday.

When asked, a Canadian High Commission spokesperson confirmed that a bilateral meeting between Mr Modi and Mr Trudeau is being scheduled during the G-7 summit, possibly on Monday, and that “on the Indo-Pacific and climate “Strengthening engagement and cooperation, as well as deepening trade ties” are on the agenda of the talks.

The Ministry of External Affairs declined to comment on the meeting, saying Mr Modi’s schedule was still being finalised. However, an official confirmed the summit, saying that in addition to the economic agenda, an interim trade agreement is expected to be completed this year, the two leaders will discuss security and “mobility” issues, including visas and immigration. Problems will be mentioned.

On Friday, the MEA announced that senior officials from eight Western countries, including the US and Canada, had met with heads of missions in New Delhi to streamline visas for Indian students who are facing long delays. Were. At present, there are 700,000 Indian applications for visas pending with the Government of Canada.

Sources said it is also likely that Mr Trudeau will discuss India’s stance on the war in Ukraine, noting that the Canadian prime minister, who focused his discussions on Saturday in Kigali, Rwanda, to stop “Russia’s illegal actions”. Where he participated in the Commonwealth Summit.

In continuation of the meeting between Mr Modi and Mr Trudeau, Foreign Secretary Vinay Kwatra spoke with Canada’s Deputy Foreign Minister Marta Morgan on 17 June, and External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar also met Canadian Foreign Minister Melanie Jolie. On the sidelines of the Commonwealth meeting in Rwanda on 23 June.

“Discussed prosperity and stability in the Indo-Pacific region, Ukraine and global food security, and the deeper cooperation between our two democracies,” Ms Morgan said after the call with Mr. Kwatra.

The two leaders are expected to formally put aside their differences over Mr Trudeau and his cabinet ministers and members of parliament’s comments on farmers’ protests in India. Canada had expressed “deep concern” about the behavior of the protesters, and said that the country would “always defend the right to peaceful protest”, and took up the issue with New Delhi.

In a scathing note on December 4, 2020, India’s Ministry of External Affairs called the statement “unacceptable interference in our internal affairs”, which would have “severely detrimental effects” on relations. On the same day, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar scrapped plans to attend a conference on COVID-19 pandemic responses hosted by Canada, and sources said Canadian officials had not been given any official meetings in Delhi for several months. .

However, in February 2021, the relationship began to revive after India sent 500,000 doses of the vaccine to Canada at Mr Trudeau’s request. Real progress was seen in March this year after the visit of Trade Minister Mary Ng to Delhi for ministerial talks on trade and investment with Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal, where both sides resumed talks for a Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA). agreed to do. ) with an interim Early Progress Trade Agreement (EPTA) expected later this year.

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