Three key takeaways from PM Modi’s Switzerland visit

  • Jayanth Jacob, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Jun 06, 2016 15:05 IST
Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrives for talks with Swiss President Johann Schneider-Ammann in Geneva, Switzerland. (Reuters Photo)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who arrived in Switzerland early Monday on the third leg of a five-nation tour, delivered a joint statement with Swiss President Johann Schneider- Ammann.

During the joint address, Modi said combating problem of black money and tax evasion is a key issue for both countries.

Earlier during the day, Modi held talks with the Swiss President in Geneva to deepen bilateral and multilateral cooperation with the key European nation.

Below are the key takeaways from PM Modi’s Switzerland visit :

NSG membership

Switzerland is a member of the nuclear suppliers group and Modi will be seeking the European country’s support to gain entry into the elite club of 48 nations. NSG countries work together to monitor and control the export of materials or technology that can be used to create nuclear weapons. India has applied for membership but with China opposing its entry, it has its task cut out as all member countries have to agree on letting in a new member.

Black money

India is keen on an automatic exchange of information about individuals who fail to disclose their foreign assets to discourage stashing of ill-gotten wealth abroad.

The two countries are talking on the issue of black money as part of negotiations for the double taxation avoidance agreement mandate.

War on black money was one of the promises that saw the BJP being voted to power and Modi, who has been accused of going soft on the issue, is keen on setting the record straight.

Economic interests

Switzerland is India’s fifth largest trading partner and the 11th biggest investor. Areas where the two countries are looking to deepen ties include renewable energy and vocational education. Modi will want more investment from the Alpine country.

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