The Prime Minister’s aim to put relations on a path of upgrading and strategic cooperation with the fifth largest economy on the planet (and the most populous country in the world with a population of 1.4 billion), and Greece becoming India’s gateway to the European Union, marks the official visit of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Greece on Friday.

The visit is historicas it is the first visit of an Indian Prime Minister to Greece in the last 40 years, since 1983, when Indira Gandhi visited our country. Modi’s arrival is a milestone that signals the will of both sides to restart and expand Greek-Indian relations – and consolidate economic cooperation – at the highest level.

Greece can become India’s gateway to the European Union, a geopolitical and economic gateway. Already, after Brexit, India is looking for alternative routes to Europe and the position of Greece, at the crossroads of three continents, is an ideal bridge to Europe, but also to the Eastern Mediterranean.

Greece and India are connected by historical ties, they are two naval powers, whose cooperation has been strengthened in recent years, especially in the fields of defense and culture, but there is still a very wide field of synergies.

The goal of the Greek side is that the resumption of contacts at the highest level should lead to an intensification of economic cooperation and contacts between Greek and Indian companies: to lead to a greater presence of Indian groups in Greece, especially in the infrastructure sectors (ports, airports), high technology, renewable energy sources, tourism, and to strengthen the presence of Greek companies in India, especially in the fields of food, medicine, shipping.

It is indicative that Greek exports barely equal 1 euro per Indian, while India has an annual outbound tourism of 40 million high-income earners.

The opportunities for both Greek and Indian businesses in investments and collaborations will be explored by institutions and business representatives from the two countries at a lunch organized on Friday. For the Greek-Indian meal that Kyriakos Mitsotakis and Narendra Modi will welcome, also signaling the will to strengthen economic cooperation, after all, representatives of important groups have traveled from India. Aim to explore investment opportunities and build relationships and partnerships.

The lunch will be attended by representatives of organizations and businesses that have either invested or are interested in investing in Greece and from the Greek side companies that are active or are interested in doing business in India. Among others, the President of GMR (Kastelli Airport), the second largest airport developer in the world, and the President of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) Sanjiv Puri will attend on the Indian side, while on the Greek side, among others , the president of SEV and the president of the Union of Shipowners will participate.