Shri Narendra Modi firmly believes that no progress is complete without engaging and learning from the outside world. Growth is not possible by remaining in a close shell, oblivious to the rapidly changing world around us. Over the last many years, especially in the recent past, numerous European nations have increased their engagement with Gujarat. Being one of India’s most economically vibrant state with a people and investor friendly government, European nations are looking at Gujarat as an attractive destination for opportunities in every sector, be it economic, social or even cultural. In Shri Narendra Modi, they have found a visionary leader who is determined to fulfill the aspirations of the people. Shri Modi’s leadership and his vision for Gujarat’s development have been appreciated as well.
All the leading European economies have active engagement with Gujarat. A historic chapter was written in October 2012 when the British High Commissioner Sir James Bevan called on Shri Narendra Modi in Gandhinagar. In a 50 minute long meeting with Shri Modi, the two of them discussed how to strengthen cooperation between the United Kingdom and Gujarat. Britain is home to a large number of people of Gujarati origin, who migrated there. Sir James Bevan was also present during the 2013 Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit, where he stressed on Britain and Gujarat being natural partners.
Britain’s Minister of State in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Mr. Hugo Swire came to Gujarat and held deliberations with Shri Narendra Modi. Minister Swire was present at the signing of the Long Term LNG Contract between GSPC and British Gas, which is a landmark step in Gujarat’s warm relations with the United Kingdom.
In November 2013 the Italian Ambassador to India Mr. Daniele Mancini led a high-powered business delegation to Gujarat and met Shri Modi. Ambassador Mancini expressed his keenness to strengthen the bond between Italy and Gujarat in the coming years.
The German Ambassador to India Mr. Michael Steiner called on Shri Modi on 16th November 2013. He discussed an array of issues with Shri Modi.
Mr. Francois Richier, France’s Ambassador to India met Shri Modi in Gujarat. The Ambassador led a delegation of 14 French companies and discussed strengthening partnership in the fields of urban infrastructure facilities, waste management and energy. The French delegation spent a long time with various authorities of the Gujarat Government during their visit to Gujarat.
In April 2013 Shri Modi met Switzerland’s Ambassador to India, Mr. Linus Von Castelmur in Gandhinagar. The Ambassador showed great keenness in understand the rapid development in Gujarat over the last decade and Shri Modi spoke about making ties stronger in fields such as skill development, tourism, agro processing, jewelry and watchmaking.
Among the Scandinavian countries, Denmark’s Ambassador to India Mr. Freddy Svane metShri Modi in June 2013. Mr. Svane also joined the National Seminar on Livestock and Dairy Development at Mahatma Mandir in Gandhinagar. Ambassador Svane expressed keenness for stronger ties with Gujarat in fields such as energy.
Mr. Lars-Olof Lindgren, Ambassador of Sweden to India came to Gujarat with a power packed delegation and during the visit the Swedish Chamber of Commerce and Industry inked a MoU with Gujarat for mutual development.
Shri Narendra Modi interacted with top lawmakers of Europe via a videoconference on 9th February 2013. The political figures who interacted with Shri Modi are Mr. Joe Leinen (German politician from the SPD and member of the European Parliament who heads the Committee on Environment, Public Health and Food Safety in the Parliament), Mr. Nirj Deva (Member of the European Parliament and politician of Britain’s Conservative Party), Ms. Anne Marie Lizin (the Honorary President of the Belgian Senate) and Mr. Vladislav Yurchik (leader of “Communist of Russia and Deputy of the Russian Parliament, ‘Duma’), Mr. Valery Sargienko (Member of Siberia’s Legislative Assembly and leader of Communist Party).The lawmakers lauded the development journey in Gujarat and congratulated Shri Modi for making the state Vibrant without a trace of corruption.
Besides this, delegations from several European nations are visiting Gujarat and being a part of the state’s journey towards all round development.