NEW DELHI: On the first day of the 9th edition of Vibrant Gujarat in Gandhi Nagar, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had bilateral meetings with four world leaders during which he discussed issues from ranging from investment to geopolitics to artificial intelligence. He met President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev, Prime Minister of Denmark Lars Løkke Rasmussen, Prime Minister of Malta Dr. Joseph Muscat and Prime Minister of Czech Republic Andrej Babis. The 3-day investment summit from 18 to 20 January is a biannual event which was started in 2003 when PM Modi was the Chief Minister of Gujarat.
Uzbekistan's President and PM discussed the 1st India-Central Asia Dialogue which happened in Samarkand, Uzbekistan last week. According to a statement released by the ministry of external affairs (MEA), the Prime Minister thanked President Mirziyoyev for his support for the First India-Central Asia Dialogue "where important discussions also took place on support to peace and development in Afghanistan". President Mirziyoyev said the dialogue "demonstrated India's positive impact on the Central Asia region and the joint quest of the participant countries for peace in Afghanistan." Uzbekistan's Novoi Minerals & Metallurgical Company signed an agreement with Department of Atomic Energy on long-term supply of Uranium Ore Concentrate for India's energy requirements. This is the second visit of Uzbekistan's President to India in 6 months. He visited New Delhi from 30 September-1 October for a state visit.
With Denmark's PM, India focused on technology cooperation. Rasmussen is the second Nordic leader to visit India this month after the visit by Norway's Prime Minister Erna Solberg 2 weeks ago. Ties between the 2 countries had taken a dip after no progress in the extradition of Kim Davy but both India and Denmark agreed to revive ties, especially after the 1st India Nordic summit in Stockholm last year when PM Rasmussen met PM Modi. Around 130 Danish companies have invested in India in areas such as shipping, renewable energy, environment, agriculture and food processing.
Indian Pharma, IT industry especially Artificial Intelligence dominated talks between Malta's PM and PM Modi. Malta's PM invited India to cooperate with his country on advanced technologies such as Artificial Intelligence, Block-chain and financial technologies. Malta which has been unofficially known as the "1st blockchain island" last year brought in formal legislation on Block-chain technology and sees Indian IT playing an important role.
During his interaction with Prime Minister of Czech Republic, PM Modi invited Czech companies to invest in defence, automotive and railway sectors. The Czech PM invited nomination of an Indian scientist for its Research & Development Council. President Ram Nath Kovind visited the central European country in September last year.
Fifteen countries - Australia, Canada, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Japan, Morocco, Norway, Poland, South Africa, South Korea, Thailand, The Netherlands, UAE and Uzbekistan - are partners for this year's Vibrant Gujarat.