G.K. Vasan Highlights Piracy Issue at Maritime Summit in Oslo
Indo-Norway Joint Working Group Meets
The Union Minister of Shipping Shri G.K.Vasan, presently on an official visit to Norway, participated in the Maritime Summit 2011 at Oslo on 24.5.2011. Ministers from 10 other countries also participated in the Summit. Sh. Vasan highlighted India’s concerns about increasing incidents of piracy and the need for concerted unified action under the UN. The international trends in shipping, challenges facing the shipping industry, sustainable shipping and prospects of Arctic shipping were also discussed.
Earlier, Sh. Vasan attended the first meeting of the Indo-Norway Joint Working Group (JWG). Senior officials and representatives of industry from both sides participated in the meeting which was very fruitful. In the JWG, issues relating to shipbuilding, coastal shipping, sustainable shipping and use of LNG as an alternative fuel were discussed. It has been decided to have the next JWG meeting in India in 2012. Sh. Vasan is visiting Norway at the invitation of Mr. Trond Giske, Hon’ble Minister of Trade and Industry, Government of Norway, to participate in the Maritime Summit 2011 and Nor Shipping Conference and Exhibition. The Norwegian Trade & Industry Minister Mr. Giske had visited India last year and Sh. Vasan’s visit is in continuation of that. India and Norway have a very strong and enduring relationship. The Indo- Norway trade is growing and has reached 800 million dollars. It has increased nearly five times in the last decade and this trend is expected to continue.
There was also a bilateral meeting with the Norwegian Minister for Trade & Industry. Issues of mutual interest were discussed. Norway shared India’s concern about the increasing incidents of piracy. Sh. Vasan also discussed areas where India can benefit from Norwegian expertise in shipbuilding, coastal shipping, coastal LNG trade, beautification of lighthouses, etc. He also met the Japanese Vice Minister for International Affairs Mr. Seiichi Ohkuchi on the sidelines of the Summit. The Minister expressed India’s solidarity with the people of Japan in their hour of grief in the wake of the devastating tsunami. Sh. Vasan also discussed issues of mutual interest for furthering cooperation in the maritime sector.