August 2019 \ World News \ INDO-GERMAN TIES
Merkel, Modi share good equation: German envoy

During Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s brief stopover ...

By Ranjana Narayan
  • Mr Modi with Ms Angela Merkel

During Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s brief stopover in Berlin in April 2018, he and German Chancellor Angela Merkel were absorbed in chatting by themselves for over 20 minutes in the balcony of the Chancellery, ahead of their official dinner meeting, as senior officials from both sides waited patiently below, in a sign of the good chemistry the two leaders share. As Merkel visits India in November for the biennial inter-governmental meeting, preparations are in full swing to take Indo-German strategic ties to a new high, says German Ambassador Walter J. Lindner.

The Intergovernmental Consultations (IGC), a strategic partnership meeting held at the level of head of government every two years, is something Germany has reserved for only the “very big and important countries”.

When Mr Modi visited Berlin for the Fourth IGC in May 2017, he was accompanied by several cabinet ministers. The German Chancellor is expected to do likewise during her visit for the Fifth IGC. “This (IGC) I think is a very good way of pushing things, giving things a bit more boost,” Ambassador Lindner said, adding that though the two sides keep working through the year, the physical presence of the two heads of government together with several of their ministers gives the ties a major fillip. During the last IGC, the two sides signed 12 cooperation documents in various sectors.