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16 Nov

India Sweden Innovation Meet

India Sweden Innovation Meet

Key Points

  • Green Transition:
    • India is well on its way to meet and exceed its Paris Climate commitments.
    • Sweden’s goal is of achieving net-zero emissions by 2045 and negative net emissions following that.
    • India and Sweden are together in the UN (United Nations) led industrial transition programme (‘Leadership Group for Industry Transition’).
      • Both have the impacts of innovation with the launch of Hybrit Green Steel (with low carbon footprint), in a sector that accounts for approximately 30% of global greenhouse gas emission.
  • Science & Technology & Research and Innovation:
    • The India Sweden innovation collaborations are guided by the India Sweden Innovation Partnership and the Joint Action Plan (JAP).
    • In 2018, the JAP was signed to include smart cities, innovation, and next generation transport.
    • In addition, the Department of Biotechnology is already engaged with Swedish Partners on Incubator Connect, Digital Health Care and Global Bio India programmes, enhancing the partnerships in the field of Biotechnology.
  • Call on Circular Economy:
    • Both countries had a new joint call on Circular economy including the theme such as Health Science and Waste to Wealth.
      • Circular Economy entails markets that give incentives to reusing products, rather than scrapping them and then extracting new resources.
    • Agreed to launch the new call in 2021-2022 on broad themes viz., Public health, prevention, and health promotion Organization and provision of care for the elderly.

India – Sweden Relations

  • Political Relations: 
    • Diplomatic relations were established in 1948 and steadily strengthened over the decades.
    • The first India-Nordic Summit (India, Sweden, Norway, Finland, Iceland and Denmark) took place in the year 2018 in Sweden.
    • Sweden also participated in the First India Nordic Baltic (including Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania) Conclave co-chaired by India in November 2020.
  • Multilateral Engagement:
    • India and Sweden jointly launched the Leadership Group on Industry Transition (LeadIT) in association with World Economic Forum (WEF) at the UN Climate Action Summit in 2019.
    • In the 1980s India and Sweden worked together on nuclear disarmament issues within the framework of the ‘Six Nation Peace Summit’ (that also included Argentina, Greece, Mexico and Tanzania).
    • At the UN General Assembly, India and Sweden present an annual Joint Statement on Humanitarian Affairs.
    • In 2013, during the Swedish Presidency, India joined the Arctic Council as an Observer at the Kiruna Ministerial Meeting.
  • Economic and Commercial relations:
    • India is Sweden’s third-largest trade partner after China and Japan in Asia.
    • Trade in goods and services has increased from USD 3 billion (2016) to USD 4.5 billion (2019).
  • Defence and Aerospace (Sweden-India Joint Action Plan 2018): It highlights collaboration on space research, technology, innovation, and applications.

Way Forward

  • Being a member of the European Union, Sweden can play an important role in India’s partnership with the EU and EU countries.
  • Strategic engagements, bilateral trade and investment scenarios are expected to embolden shared economic progress under mutually beneficial nomenclature.
  • The ongoing momentum of consolidation of strategic interests between New Delhi and Stockholm in the aftermath of March 2021 summit is expected to make an impeccable imprint in regional and global levels especially in defining the post Covid-19 geopolitical chessboard, especially in the context of India ascending to G-20 presidency in 2023.

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