Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla to Visit France, Germany & UK to Review Bilateral Ties

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Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla will embark on a week-long visit to France, Germany and the United Kingdom beginning Thursday to discuss a host of issues including Indian priorities of robust multilateralism and a free, open and inclusive Indo-Pacific. The Ministry of External Affairs said Shringla's visit from October 29 to November 4 to the three countries is part of India's continuing international engagement and diplomatic outreach in spite of the limitations posed by the coronavirus pandemic.

"Indian priorities such as robust and reformed multilateralism, its expanded multilateral and plurilateral engagements including its forthcoming non-permanent tenure in the UN Security Council, and its commitment to a free, open and inclusive Indo-Pacific will be discussed," it said. The MEA said France, Germany and the UK are strategic partners of India, which has close and well-established relations with these nations. "Bilateral ties are multi-dimensional and have grown rapidly." During his visit, the foreign secretary will review bilateral relations and discuss matters of mutual interest and share Indian perspectives with his counterparts and with other key interlocutors, it said in a statement. The issues to be discussed will also include international cooperation in dealing with the coronavirus pandemic and its consequences.

The foreign secretary will also interact with businesspersons, academics, intellectuals and media persons in these three countries. "India's relations with France, Germany and the UK are built on a foundation of shared democratic values and are informed by a commonality of interest in issues such as sustainable development and climate change," the MEA said. "India has very substantial trade and commercial ties and large investment flows with these countries. India also works closely with these countries in multilateral and plurilateral platforms on various issues," it said.