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SMEs to be in focus in trade ties with Germany

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Defence hardware, components to be one of key areas of collaboration

STRENGTHENING TIES: The Minister for Economics & Technology, Germany, Mr Michael Glos, flanked by the Union Minister for Commerce and Industry, Mr Kamal Nath (left), and the FICCI President, Mr S.K. Poddar, at a meeting in the Capital on Tuesday. Kamal Narang
STRENGTHENING TIES: The Minister for Economics & Technology, Germany, Mr Michael Glos, flanked by the Union Minister for Commerce and Industry, Mr Kamal Nath (left), and the FICCI President, Mr S.K. Poddar, at a meeting in the Capital on Tuesday. Kamal Narang

Our Bureau

New Delhi, Aug. 29

The Union Minister of Commerce and Industry, Mr Kamal Nath, said that defence hardware and components would be one of the key areas of collaboration between the Governments of India and Germany, on the sidelines of an Indo-German seminar organised by the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI).

The Commerce Minister also called for closer trade and economic engagement with Germany, with special focus on the small and medium enterprises (SME). He said, "We are particularly happy to note that visits to India by German SMEs have increased. SME links between the two countries have to be strengthened. Outsourcing to India should be a competitive option for them."

Untapped potential

Mr Nath also emphasised on the need to exploit the untapped potential, taking full advantage of the emerging new economic opportunities on both sides and expressed hope that Germany would take advantage of India being investor-friendly in the current times, and show greater engagement with it in the infrastructure, information technology, pharmaceutical and automobile sectors. "Germany, the world's largest exporter and India, with its skilled manpower and steady emergence as a manufacturing hub, can synergise their respective strengths to take bilateral trade and economic relations to a new high," he said.

Meanwhile, the German Federal Minister of Economics and Technology, Mr Michael Glos, reiterating Mr Nath's views invited Indian companies to take advantage of the technological capabilities and innovativeness of German companies to turn out efficient and more competitive products.

He also applauded the strides taken by the Indian industry in the post-reform period and said that it was time for both the countries to join hands to tap the huge German and the EU market.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated August 30, 2006)
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