New Delhi [India]: Foreign Secretary Vinay Kwatra on Monday said that Greece is one of the most important European partners of India and pointed out Athens has been a supporter of New Delhi’s United Nations Security Council’s permanent membership.
In the special briefing ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to South Africa and Greece, Kwatra said, “Greece is one of India’s important European partners it is the member of the EU, NATO and the gateway to Europe and also to the EU market. Greece enjoys a privileged position after the crossroad of Asia, Europe and Africa.”
“Both India and Greece are not just modern democracies but also share historical and cultural relations. Important elements of the partnership include defence and security, shipping and most recently the elements relating to migration and mobility are being given shape in terms of structured partnership between India and Greece,” he added.
Kwatra also stated that Greece is also being a strong supporter and partner with India on issues of the core interest in the UN and other international organization including their support of our permanent membership in the expanded UNSC.
It is pertinent to mention here that the last visit by any Prime Minister of India was in 1983 when then PM Indira Gandhi made a diplomatic trip to Athens.
Indian Foreign Secretary Kwatra detailed India’s focus on connectivity, both physical and digital in the context of connectivity with Greece.
“During PM Modi’s visit to Greece, both sides will look to expand and diversify trade and investment segment of cooperation, deepen and expand defence and security partnership, infrastructure cooperation, shipbuilding industry…The visit would give both sides an opportunity to discuss also the regional and global issues of mutual interest and help broaden and deepen our bilateral engagement,” Kwatra said in the special briefing.
PM Modi will travel to Greece on August 25. During his visit, he will hold a meeting with his Greek counterpart Kyriakos Mitsotakis and discuss ways to further deepen the ties between the two nations. He will also interact with business leaders from both countries. He will also have an interaction with the Indian community in Greece.
“Following his visit to South Africa, Prime Minister will pay an official visit to Greece on 25 August 2023 at the invitation of Kyriakos Mitsotakis, Prime Minister of Greece.
This will be the first visit by an Indian Prime Minister to Greece in 40 years,” MEA said in a press release.
It further said, “India and Greece enjoy civilizational ties, which have strengthened in recent years through cooperation in areas like maritime transport, defence, trade and investments and people-to-people ties.”