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The Grand Duke expected in India for 2021

During an interview with Xavier Bettel on Thursday, the Indian Prime Minister renewed his invitation to the Luxembourg head of state. But it was above all new partnerships that were discussed.

Patrick JACQUEMOT

During an interview with Xavier Bettel on Thursday, the Indian Prime Minister renewed his invitation to the Luxembourg head of state. But it was above all new partnerships that were discussed.

Between Luxembourg and New Delhi, relations are in good shape. And Xavier Bettel will not fail to prove it, this Friday, during a press conference where the Prime Minister planned to unveil the new agreements that the Grand Duchy could sign with India. Agreements which he was able to talk about on Thursday during a videoconference with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

So close to 3,000 Indians now live in Luxembourg, the number of Indian companies now having their attachment to the country is also important. But many other relationships are to be forged, and the signing of a series of MoU (Memorandum of Understanding) should materialize this hope. Both in the field of trade as for the sectors of finance, innovation, sustainable development but also information and communication technologies.

Between the giant state (1.4 billion inhabitants) and the Grand Duchy, there is also a question of strengthening partnerships in space. Lately it is from an Indian base that the company based in Luxembourg, Kleos Space, Had launched its 4 satellites, but the two States also intend to enter into agreements on the exploration and use of outer space for peaceful purposes.

The two leaders (who have already met three times) were also able to congratulate each other during their meeting on the cooperation agreement validated between Luxinnovation and its counterpart Invest India. Agreement which should make it possible to develop commercial collaboration between Luxembourg and Indian companies.

“A call for strengthening cooperation in the steel sector, where the ties between India and Luxembourg are already very strong, has also been made,” said Prime Minister Xavier Bettel’s office. It is true that the two states have been cooperating for a long time in the steel sector. Thus, the Luxembourg company Paul Wurth has been present in India for two decades. There she played an important role in the modernization of the steel sector with SAIL, TISCO and Jindal Steel. Without forgetting ArcelorMittal, based in the Grand Duchy and which remains, despite its setbacks, the largest steel company in the world, and which recently concluded a joint venture in India, in partnership with Nippon Steel.

Among the cooperation agreements found, we will also note the new relationship between the Luxembourg Stock Exchange and two Indian financial institutions: State Bank of India and India International Exchange. This relates in particular to the development of green finance and ESG analysis rules (environmental, social and governance criteria) in the evaluation of listed companies.

Diplomatic support

Question diplomacy, Narendra Modi also insisted that the Grand Duke Henri not delay in going to India. The event was slated for last spring, but had to be postponed due to the covid outbreak. A virus that is still hitting hard the country which has passed the bar 132,000 dead and 9 million positive cases. An invitation also extended to Xavier Bettel and members of his government, in particular to possibly inaugurate the Luxembourg embassy in the Indian capital.

The prime ministers confirmed their mutual support for the granting of seats at the UN. Moreover, at the level of the Security Council, Luxembourg has supported the Indian candidacy for a non-permanent seat (2021-2022) and will also support the candidacy for a permanent seat. India, for its part, has pledged to support Luxembourg’s candidacy for the UN Human Rights Council for the period 2022-2024.


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