Opening a new chapter in their ties, India and Sweden agreed to strengthen defence and security cooperation after the bilateral talks between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Swedish counterpart Stefan Lofven. This is first visit by the Indian Prime Minister to Sweden after nearly three decades.
Addressing a joint presser after their talks Stefan Löfven said, “I would like to commend the Indian govt and its strong focus on innovation as a key to progress and prosperity”.
Underlining the significance of the visit, first by an Indian PM after a gap of nearly 30 years, Prime Minister Modi said, “Sweden has been a strong contributor to our ‘Make in India’ program… India and Sweden have agreed on an innovation partnership and a joint action plan,”.
On his part the Swedish Prime Minister also lauded India as a “global power” and said the two countries are a “perfect match”. There has been an intensification of cooperation in areas such as green technology and smart cities.
Earlier, the two leaders had a “productive exchange” of views on bilateral and regional issues.
“A relationship that has grown in intensity over the years and has a huge potential! PM @narendramodi met with @SwedishPM Stefan Lofven,” External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar had tweeted.
Modi arrived in Stockholm Monday night, where he was received by his counterpart Lofven. The two leaders travelled together in the same vehicle from the airport to the hotel.
Modi is also slated to hold bilateral meetings with leaders of four other Nordic nations – Finland, Norway, Denmark and Iceland.
“10 engagements in 10 hours- a hectic day begins for PM @narendramodi in Stockholm! Call on King of Sweden, bilateral meeting with @SwedishPM & 4 Nordic countries’ leaders, roundtable meeting with Swedish CEOs, call by Leader of Opposition, India-Nordic Summit and Community event,” Kumar tweeted.
India and Sweden will also jointly organise the India-Nordic Summit in Stockholm today. The summit will also be attended by the prime ministers of Finland, Norway, Denmark and Iceland.
From Sweden, Modi will tonight travel to the UK where he will attend the CHOGM, besides holding bilateral talks with his British counterpart Theresa May.
He will also have a brief stopover in Berlin, Germany, on April 20 while on his way back home.
(With inputs from PTI)