India and Germany on Friday agreed to broaden their cooperation and "shape the future" with focus on trade, bilateral investment, energy, hi-tech and defence even as both sides committed themselves to EU-India negotiations for a "broad based, ambitious and balanced" FTA.
Besides agreeing to greater cooperation at all international bodies, both sides agreed to continue working together to prepare the ground for India to accede to the export control regimes as a full member and thereby strengthen the international non-proliferation regime.
"The Indo-German cooperation opens up excellent prospects for developing both countries to the benefit of their peoples.
"Germany and India share the view that new initiatives in the area of trade, bilateral investment, energy, energy security, the environment, culture, education, training, research, technology and defence can catalyse and activate the great potential of their bilateral ties," said a joint statement released at the end of the Indo-German intergovernmental consultations held here.
The meeting was co-chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
Germany and India are determined to further expand their cooperation in higher education, research and technology dynamic core areas of the Indo-German Partnership and to open up new and innovative areas of cooperation, the statement said.
The statement titled 'Shaping the future together' noted that close trade and investment relations are a core dimension of bilateral partnership and of great importance for the development of both the Indian and the German economy.
"Both Governments will strongly back a further intensification of Indo-German business cooperation. Both sides would encourage cooperation in the field of rare earths on mutually beneficial terms. Both Governments recognize that expanding high technology trade and cooperation is key to deepening the strategic content of their relations.
"Both sides agree to consult regularly on advancing this objective and to this end form a High Technology Partnership Group including both government and business," it said.
Both sides emphasised that freedom of movement for business visitors and professionals is important for the sustained growth of trade and investment flows. Both sides agreed to work together to facilitate such movement between the two countries.