India, Norway to enhance ocean and maritime cooperation
India’s Minister for Science & Technology and Earth Sciences, Dr. Jitendra Singh held a bilateral meeting with Norway’s Minister for Climate and Environment, Mr. Espen Barth Eide, on the side-lines of the UN Ocean Conference at Lisbon, Portugal. The two discussed several issues of mutual interest.
The meeting comes after the 5th India-Norway Task Force meeting held last week in New Delhi, between the Norwegian Ambassador to India, Hans Jacob Frydenlund, and the Secretary, Ministry of Earth Sciences, Dr. M Ravichandran.
The Task Force meeting had agreed on a set of new projects and a roadmap for connecting ocean industries from both sides. Both the Countries agreed to explore more cooperation on green maritime, sustainable ocean management, deep ocean technology, and offshore wind.
During the latest meeting, Dr. Jitendra Singh and Mr. Espen Barth Eide expressed satisfaction over the progress made at the Task Force meeting and reviewed the dialogue and progress on the various issues that had been under discussion. They appreciated the ongoing close cooperation between the two countries and hoped the partnership would go from strength to strength in the future.
Dr Jitendra Singh referred to Prime Minister Mr. Narendra Modi’s meeting with his Norwegian counterpart Mr. Jonas Gahr Store in Copenhagen on the sidelines of the 2nd India-Nordic Summit last month, where he had highlighted how Norway’s skills and India’s scope provided natural complementarities.
Quoting Prime Minister Modi, Dr. Jitendra Singh underlined the potential for deepening engagement in areas like blue economy, renewable energy, green hydrogen, solar and wind projects, green shipping, fisheries, water management, rainwater harvesting, space cooperation, long term Infrastructure investment, health, and culture.
Dr. Singh also referred to a pilot project between the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) and the Indian Institute of Technology-Kharagpur (IIT-KGP) agreed in January this year to improve the interdisciplinary skills, digital literacy, and critical thinking of undergraduate students. He emphasised that these skills are the need of the hour, with the growing demand for new technologies and innovative solutions in the maritime sector.