On August 25, 2023, India’s Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, embarked on a significant visit to Greece, marking the first such visit by an Indian prime minister in four decades. The last Indian prime minister to visit Greece was Indira Gandhi in September 1983.
Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis highlighted the historical ties between the two nations, tracing their relations back to ancient times. During a joint televised statement, he expressed their shared delight in upgrading their cooperation to a strategic relationship, built upon the strong historical foundations.
In response, Prime Minister Modi spoke about their mutual decision to strengthen bilateral ties, particularly focusing on defense and security sectors, as well as infrastructure, agriculture, education, and technology. He also emphasized India’s commitment to facilitating the exchange of skills between the two countries, announcing an upcoming mobility and migration agreement.
Modi shared his perspective with Kathimerini, describing Greece as a crucial economic, logistical, and strategic gateway for India’s access to the European Union and the broader Eastern European region. He envisioned Indian and Greek companies leveraging Greece’s strategic geography to establish value chains connecting them to the extensive EU market.
The significance of Prime Minister Modi’s visit was underscored by the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, which emphasized his interest in economic cooperation, particularly in light of China’s presence in Greece. The article highlighted Modi’s references to the strategic importance of Piraeus, a port currently under Chinese administration.
Government sources confirmed that Modi’s visit signified both parties’ desire to reinvigorate and expand their relations, with a specific focus on enhancing economic cooperation at the highest level. This renewed cooperation is expected to lead to increased Indian investment in Greece, notably in areas such as infrastructure, high technology, renewable energy, and tourism.
Simultaneously, Greek companies are anticipated to bolster their presence in India, particularly in sectors like food, medicine, and shipping. The government sources emphasized Greece’s potential to serve as India’s gateway to the European Union, offering both geopolitical and economic advantages.