Ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's arrival in Sweden, Indian Ambassador to Finland Vani Rao confirmed that issues related to global security would be discussed at the India-Nordic Summit.
"Global security is definitely on the agenda for discussion. In the recent past, European countries have been a target of terrorism and violent extremism. The European Union is more sensitive to the issue now, which gives us an opportunity to sensitise them about the threat of terrorism and violent extremism, and how these groups are active in our neighborhood, particularly in South Asia," she told ANI.
With regards to the India-Nordic Summit, Rao stated that Prime Minister Modi would be holding talks with the prime ministers from the Nordic nations, namely Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden, both in the summit and through one-on-one engagements on how they could contribute to India's flagship programmes.
"This is the first time the Summit is taking place here. The Nordic region countries are similar in terms of socio-economic status and industrialisation. They also possess stable governance and strong stance on environmental matters. We will engage with them in a similar manner, and examine how they can help our missions like Make in India, Skill India, Startup India and Smart Cities programmes. We are also looking at leveraging their expertise in the areas of food processing, renewable energy, and so on," she said.
Talking about the bilateral engagement between Prime Minister Modi and his Finnish counterpart Juha Sipila, Rao stated that a high-level dialogue would be taking place to review and strengthen bilateral ties, with trade and investment as the key focus.
"Prime Minister Modi and the Finnish PM are meeting after almost two years. It will be a high-level dialogue, where the two leaders would review the bilateral agenda, and how the same can be strengthened and diversified. While trade and investment will be the focus, we are also looking to explore engagement in new areas. For example, Nordic countries have expertise in vocational education and clean technology; these are some areas of interest. Apart from this, the two leaders will also discuss matters pertaining economic and financial cooperation," she said.
Earlier in the day, Prime Minister Modi embarked on his five-day state visit to Sweden, the United Kingdom (UK) and Germany.
Prime Minister Modi will be attending the India-Nordic Summit and Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in Sweden and the UK respectively.
In Sweden, Prime Minister Modi will address a gathering of select business leaders and will also meet the Indian community in the nation.
Thereafter, the Prime Minister will visit the UK from April 17 to 20 for a bilateral visit, with a focus on enhancing India-UK tech partnership.
After concluding his visits to Sweden and the UK, Prime Minister Modi will meet German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin for a brief while, where both the leaders will exchange views on a number of bilateral, regional and global issues.