India extremely important partner: EU

Last Updated: Tue, Jan 29, 2013 19:34 hrs

Brussels: India is an "extremely important partner" for the European Union, the grouping's foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton said Tuesday ahead of the 13th EU-India Ministerial meeting to take place here Wednesday.

The EU will be represented by Ashton and India will be represented by External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid, the EuAsiaNews reported.

"India is an extremely important partner for us in the region and in the international fora. Since the signature of the Strategic Partnership, our cooperation has gone from strength to strength. I hope we can build on that at the ministerial meeting," Ashton said.

This will be the first time the two leaders meet since Khurshid was appointed external affairs minister, an EU press release said.

The meeting will take stock of progress made in the bilateral relationship since the previous summit in February 2012.

"I am very much looking forward to continuing our extremely close working relationship with India, and to meeting Minister Khurshid," Ashton said.

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