India is an emerging player on the global stage, thanks to its growing economy and its strategic role in Asia as a balancing power. The EU cannot ignore India’s rise, especially given its own aspiration to be an effective global actor – a status that unfortunately the EU has not yet attained. Nevertheless, EU–India relations have stagnated, confined to an economic and bureaucratic nature, and need to recover momentum. The EU should therefore nurture the current relations and intensify its efforts in the medium term, working towards a reconciliation of the different priorities.
To strengthen the EU–India partnership, the EU should also address the lack of understanding on the part of member states, by convincing them and their industries of the added value of collectively cooperating with India on issues of common concern, and on the part of India, by demonstrating the benefits of dealing with the EU as a counterpart. The EU could thereby improve its credibility as a partner and create a conducive political space with India, in which European business would also gain.
2. What kind of partner is India for the EU?
3. What are the gains for the EU?
4. What would India gain?
5. How to strengthen the EU–India partnership
5.1 Raise the EU’s standing as an effective partner
5.2 Leverage the EU’s soft power
5.3 Create a political space