India, Sweden ink six agreements on Pranab visit

Stockholm/New Delhi, June 1 (IANS) India and Sweden on Monday inked six agreements, including in the field of polar research and for boosting trade, during the visit of President Pranab Mukherjee to the key Arctic Council member, in the first-ever visit by an Indian head of state.

Mukherjee is on a five-day visit to Sweden and Belarus.

The president, who began his visit May 31, will be in Sweden till to June 2, and in Belarus June 2-4.

Among the agreements inked is a MoU on Cooperation in Sustainable Urban Development, which includes dialogue and interaction on global sustainable urban development issues, exchange of knowledge, institutional cooperation including capacity building, research and development and commercial relations regarding sustainable urban development, according to a ministry of external affairs statement.

Both sides also inked a MoU for cooperation in the field of micro, small and medium enterprises. This aims at promoting partnership projects, institution to institution and enterprise to enterprise cooperation relating to MSMEs, encourage exchange of information and experiences in policy setting and research on the development of MSMEs, feasibility studies to identify thrust areas and opportunities for development of MSMEs and facilitating exchange of business mission.

Both also inked an agreement on Visa Exemption for diplomatic passports.

A letter of intent was also signed between India’s Earth System Science Organisation (ESSO) and the Swedish Polar Research Secretariat (SPRS) on collaboration in polar and ocean research. This is to encourage collaboration in the areas of polar (Antarctic and Arctic) and ocean research by enhancing scientific capabilities, conducting joint research and survey activities, exchange of informational material on education, training and research matters, said the statement.

Both inked a memorandum of intent between the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and the Swedish Research Council for Health Working Life and Welfare (FORTE) for recording the intention of both institutions to cooperate in the field of ageing research and health.

Another MoI was signed between India’s Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO) and the Swedish Medical Products Agency (MPA). This agreement, complimentary to the ongoing cooperation between India and Sweden covering the area of health, is for increasing bilateral cooperation in the fields of pharmacovigilance, electronic submissions in related matter, clinical trials, drugs, medical devices and diagnostic kits, cosmetic and hygiene products and for exchange of information and experiences regarding good manufacturing practice, said the statement.

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