Modi urges Germany to invest in India

Modi and Merkel show friendship
Modi and Merkel show friendship   

India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi joined German Chancellor Angela Merkel during a tour of a major industrial trade fair in Hannover, Germany, on Monday, continuing his bid to woo investors and deepen trade links with Europe's biggest economy.

India is the partner country for this year's Hannover Messe, the world's biggest industrial and technology fair, and Modi is expected to use it to promote his "Make in India" campaign, to encourage global firms to manufacture their goods in India.

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In a speech at the opening of the five-day fair on Sunday, Modi was reported as saying there were "huge" opportunities for German investors in India, as he seeks to raise the country's appeal to foreign investors.

Tobias Schwarz | AFP | Getty Images

High-profile Modi became India's prime minister following a landslide victory last year. His efforts to reform Asia's third biggest economy have lifted sentiment towards the country and provided a powerful boost to the country's stock market, which is up about 30 percent in the past year. He is currently on his maiden tour of Europe, which started in France last week.

A focus for the conference is the use of robotics in manufacturing, for which analysts say there is strong demand from Asian countries such as India, China and South Korea.

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According to the Indian embassy in Berlin, Germany is India's largest trading partner in Europe and has consistently been among India's top 10 global trade partners.

"India is a huge market, it's a very important market, so we're very happy that Mr Modi is pushing this idea of 'Make in India,'" Heinrich Frontzek, the vice president for corporate communication and future concepts at German automation firm Festo, told CNBC at Hannover Messe on Monday.

Jochen Kockler, a member of the Hannover Messe board, said there had been "positive signals" from the meeting between the German and Indian leaders on Monday.

"All our local exhibitors have said they've never seen such a powerful, positive, dynamic signal as the one that came from Modi in his opening speech yesterday," Kockler told CNBC.