Published: Tue, April 17, 2018
Finance | By Loren Pratt

Modi leaves for Sweden on his three-nation tour of Europe

Modi leaves for Sweden on his three-nation tour of Europe

" I am confident that these visits to Sweden and United Kingdom will be useful in enhancing our engagement with these countries, " the PM said. Prime Ministers of all the Nordic countries - Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden - will also attend the summit.

"At the invitation of Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Lofven, Prime Minister Modi will undertake his first visit to Sweden on April 16 to 17".

Sweden and the Nordic countries' courting of India is to give a boost to the bilateral trade which today stands at a total trade of around $1.9 billion in 2016-17 down from $2.17 billion, and hence both countries have set a lofty total trade target of $5 billion.

The bilateral leg of the United Kingdom tour begins with PM Modi's talks with Theresa May at 10 Downing Street on Wednesday morning, during which both leaders are expected to discuss a wide range of issues of mutual interest, including separatism, cross-border terrorism, visa and immigration.

The bilateral agenda includes renewing a memorandum of understanding that lapsed in 2014 on the framework to return illegal Indians in the UK - British authorities claim that number is in the hundreds of thousands.


This is the first prime ministerial visit from India to Sweden in 30 years after the visit of Rajiv Gandhi in 1988. An Ayurveda Centre of Excellence will be launched in London. During his two-day visit to the state, PM Modi is also expected to meet the residents of Naxal-hit Bastar district.

"Under the theme of Living Bridge, I will also have the opportunity to meet people from various walks of life who have enriched the multi-faceted India-UK relationship", he said.

"According to Subrata Bhattacharjee, Joint Secretary (Central Europe) in the Ministry of External Affairs, the Nordic region represents a prosperous society with high incomes and a strong focus on quality and innovation".

Mr Modi is among only three world leaders attending CHOGM to be invited for an audience with Queen Elizabeth II on Wednesday evening.

Instead of owning up and making reparations, the prime minister chose to remain quiet, breaking his silence only when public outrage both in India and internationally reached a point when he could no longer ignore it, the group of 49 former bureaucrats said. He will attend the CHOGM in London from April 19 to 20. I would also call on His Majesty King Carl XVI Gustaf, King of Swede, "the PM said".

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