Austria set for historic Indian visit to enhance ties

Indian ambassador to Austria Shambhu Kumaran on Monday said Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to Vienna will give much-needed dynamism and impetus to the Indo-Austrian relationship.

PM Modi's upcoming visit to Austria will be the first prime ministerial visit in 41 years, the last being of Indira Gandhi in 1983.

"This is one of the Prime Minister's first visits after being re-elected for the third time as Prime Minister. There is a great deal of interest in Austria to see how this tall leader of the democratic world shares his perspective on various issues. This is the first time in many decades that high-level political visits are happening. This gives the much-needed dynamism and impetus for this relationship to develop in the matter it has the potential to," Kumaran told ANI.

PM Modi's official visit on July 9-10 in Austria comes when both countries mark 75 years of their diplomatic relationship.

Kumaran further added that the India-Austria partnership has multiple dimensions as business and technology partnership is very important along with people-to-people connect.

"There are a growing number of Indians working in Austria. There is a great deal of interest in Austria for Yoga, Ayurveda and India's civilisational dimensions," Kumaran said.

When asked about the focus areas for the India- Austria relationship, the Indian Envoy said, "We have identified several sectors like infrastructure, transportation, mobility, renewable energy and other clean technologies. Broad-based innovation partnership and startup-level cooperation. We have set up a startup bridge between the two countries this year. It is a partnership that will focus heavily on technology in particular clean and digital technologies"

Kumaran elaborated that PM Modi will hold substantial talks with the Austrian leadership with Chancellor Karl Nehammer. He will also meet President Alexander Van der Bellen and interact with Austrian CEOs and Indian business delegation.

PM Modi will also address the Indian community in the last leg of his visit to Austria.

PM Modi, who is on a two-day visit to Russia from Monday, reached a hotel in Moscow. Russian First Deputy Prime Minister Denis Manturov, who received PM Modi at the airport, accompanied him to the hotel, where members of the Indian diaspora had gathered to welcome him. After Russia, PM Modi will leave for Austria.

Meanwhile, while speaking about the Austria visit, PM Modi said, "In Austria, I will have the opportunity to meet President Alexander Van der Bellen and Chancellor Karl Nehammer. Austria is our steadfast and reliable partner and we share the ideals of democracy and pluralism."

"This is the first visit of an Indian Prime Minister in over 40 years. I look forward to my discussions to take our partnership to even greater heights in new and emerging areas of innovation, technology and sustainable development among others. Together with the Austrian Chancellor, I look forward to exchanging views with business leaders from both sides to explore mutually beneficial trade and investment opportunities. I will also be interacting with the Indian community in Austria which is well-regarded for its professionalism and conduct," he added.


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