April 2019 \ Cover Story \ Cover Story
“Luxembourg–India Relations growing by the day”

H.E. Mr. Jean Claude Kugener, Ambassador of Luxembourg to India ...

  • H.E. Mr Jean Claude Kugener, Ambassador of Luxembourg to India

                                               Interview with H.E. Mr Jean Claude Kugener

                                                      Ambassador of Luxembourg to India

H.E. Mr. Jean Claude Kugener, Ambassador of Luxembourg to India, touches on a variety of subjects that reflect the deep and strong relations of friendship ranging from the Luxembourg companies flourishing in India to the Schengen visas and wines in an interview India Empire Magazine’s Editor and Publisher Sayantan Chakravarty

Considering that your recent posting here in New Delhi must assume great significance, what are the key areas you’d like to focus on, going forward?

Since my arrival in India last September, I have been working together with my colleagues at the Embassy and our 3 Honorary Consuls in India, Mr. Rajat Dalmia in Kolkata, Mr. Perses Bilimoria in Mumbai and Mrs. Suhasini Mani Ratnam in Chennai, to strengthen the already excellent bilateral relations between India and Luxembourg. We are currently celebrating 70 years of diplomatic relations that were established on 1 July 1948. This Anniversary has been marked by many high-level visits and beautiful success stories. 2019 is a very special year, as we also celebrate the 90th Anniversary of Luxembourg’s first Vice-Consulate in Bombay established on 5 November 1929. Despite the size of both countries, we have become strong partners over the decades and have built deep relations in many areas.

Among the large amount of Luxembourgish industries and companies, big and small, active with and in India, I would like to highlight only but a few: the world’s largest steel producer Arcelor-Mittal has an obvious Indian link and is headquartered in Luxembourg since the merger between Arcelor and Mittal Steel in 2006. Based in Luxembourg since its creation in 1870, the international engineering company Paul Wurth has been present in India since more than 25 years. Its Indian office is the Group’s first Asian subsidiary and India counts among its most important markets after the European Union. In West Bengal, we have, among others, 2 Luxembourgish companies Ceratizit and Amer-Sil Ketex who have an impressive track record in their domain in the country. Amer-Sil, the reputed specialist for separators and gauntlets in industrial lead acid batteries, merged in 2015 with Ketex and has 3 production facilities in West Bengal, Himachal Pradesh and Karnataka.

In Finance and IT, we also wish to create new contacts and opportunities. Luxembourg is the Number 1 Investment Fund Centre in Europe. The Luxembourg Stock Exchange (LuxSE) listed its first Masala bond in 2008 and the number of INR denominated debt securities has gradually increased ever since. In 2016, Luxembourg created the 1st Green Exchange in the world, a dedicated platform for green, social and sustainable securities. These are but a few of the many projects we have launched to make Luxembourg better known in India and to further deepen the relations in the coming years.