Swiss minister to visit India: Focus on trade, skill collaboration


swissSwitzerland has turned its gaze on the India opportunity that has become more attractive under the reform-minded dispensation of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Swiss Economic Affairs Minister Johann N. Schneider Ammann will be coming to India on a two-day visit from May 15 – the first by a Swiss Cabinet Minister since the Modi government took charge.

Aiming to enhance economic ties between the two nations, he will meet India’s Minister of State for Commerce & Industry (Independent Charge) Nirmala Sitharaman and Minister of State for Skill Development Rajiv Pratap Rudy. The two countries hope to expand economic cooperation through a proposed free trade pact.

He will be accompanied by a 15-member highly-profile business delegation and three members of Cantonal government.

During his stay in India, Mr Schneider is expected to meet India’s Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in Bangalore on May 16.

In the financial year 2013-14, imports from India stood at $1.82 billion, while Swiss exports to India was $19.43 billion.

Switzerland is now the fifth largest exporter to India, especially the supply of precious metal to the surging Indian market. India, on the other hand, has made significant progress in exporting goods to Switzerland, which has helped the country to bring down its trade deficit.