The Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi held talks with the Prime Minister of Spanish Government, Mariano Rajoy at the Moncloa Palace in Madrid on 31 May 2017.
Narendra Modi in his opening remarks spoke about how the bilateral talks would go a long way in deepening ties between the two nations and also how in an interconnected and interdependent world, India and Spain could work together for mutual benefit as well as for the benefit of the world at large. Modi also called the Spanish Prime Minister a visionary leader.
The Prime Minister urged cooperation between India and Spain in fighting terrorism, as both the nations have faced the brunt of it. He stated that as both the countries are engaging in vigorous economic reform, there is immense scope for cooperation in infrastructure, railways and smart cities.
Modi also added that the vision of ‘New India’ will be enhanced through the ‘New Momentum’ in relations between India and Spain.
Further, the two nations signed seven agreements.
• Agreement for Transfer of Sentence Persons
• MoU on Cooperation in Organ Transplantation
• MoU on Cooperation in Cyber Security
• MoU on Cooperation in Renewable Energy
• MoU on Technical Cooperation in Civil Aviation
• Agreement on visa waiver for holders of diplomatic passports.
• MoU between Foreign Service Institute and Diplomatic Academy of Spain.
Following the meeting with the President, Narendra met Spanish CEOs and during the meeting, he said that there is immense potential for further growth of Spanish investments in India. He also mentioned some sectors in particular including infrastructure, renewable energy, food processing, auto, chemicals and textiles.
Modi further invited Spanish participation in India’s Smart Cities initiative. He also gave a broad overview of the economic reforms undertaken in India, including GST and asserted how initiatives, like Make in India, Digital India and Start up India, have become global magnets for investment.
The Prime Minister also met with the King of Spain, King Felipe VI. The visit is a part of Modi’s four-nation tour that started with Germany, followed by Spain and then he would be going to Russia and finally to France.
• The visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi is the first visit by an Indian Prime Minister to Spain in almost 30 years. The last Prime Minister to visit Spain was Rajiv Gandhi in 1988.
• Narendra Modi had previously met the Spanish Prime Minister on the sidelines of the G20 Summit in Turkey in November 2015.
• Modi welcomed Spain’s infrastructure, tourism, energy and defence companies to invest in priority sectors in India.
• Spain is India’s 7th largest trading partner in the European Union. Bilateral trade between both the nations have totalled USD 5.27 billion in 2016.