The two countries reached an agreement to encourage joint initiatives and technology development in the health sector taking their already productive relationship a notch higher.
The Indian government’s approval of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the ministries of health of India and Denmark will set the agenda for a new avenue of cooperation between the two countries as they look to strengthen their partnership.
The Union Cabinet of India last week approved the MoU for cooperation in the field of health and medicine, the Ministry of External Affairs said in a statement.
According to officials, the bilateral MoU will encourage cooperation between the Ministry of Health of India and the Ministry of Health of the Kingdom of Denmark through joint initiatives and technology development in the health sector – thereby facilitating the improvement of the public health status of the people of both countries.
During Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s first virtual summit with Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen last year, India and Denmark elevated their relations to a “green strategic partnership” that will focus on expanding economic ties, green growth and cooperation on global challenges such as climate change. The two leaders also agreed to expand their cooperation on ways to combat Covid-19 and future pandemics, including the development of vaccines.
In the virtual summit, it was PM Modi who brought up the issue of wind energy, and Denmark’s plans to build the world's first wind energy hub on an artificial island in the North Sea. The hub on the North Sea island and the other on the island of Bornholm in Denmark will have an initial installed capacity of 5,000 megawatt and it will go up to 12,000 MW in the future.
India’s strategic outreach to Denmark and other Scandinavian countries is also borne out of the fact that the Covid-19 pandemic has demonstrated the risks for global supply chains to rely heavily on any single source.
On similar lines, PM Modi said last year that the events of the past few months have highlighted the necessity of like-minded countries such as India and Denmark, which share a rules-based and democratic value system, to work together.
The latest MoU is thus the continuation of that work.
According to Joint Secretary (Central Europe) Neeta Bhushan, the partnership is expected to lead to joint ventures and technology transfers. A time-bound action plan would be drawn up with specific targets for the next few years, she said. Earlier, India and Denmark also agreed to hold regular consultations on climate change and renewable energy and to cooperate in water efficiency and water loss, with the Jal Shakti ministry and the Danish Environmental Protection Agency and Danish environment ministry being tasked to develop a work plan for 2021-23.