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India-Austria to cooperate in green hydrogen

On Wednesday, India and Austria emphasized the significance of fostering a sustainable economic partnership and expressed their support for collaboration between institutions in the field of renewable and green hydrogen.

During his official visit to Austria from July 9-10, Prime Minister Modi engaged in bilateral discussions with Chancellor Karl Nehammer. Being parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and as countries committed to holding the increase in the global average temperature to well below two degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels, the leaders focused on sustainability and recognised that this would significantly reduce the risks and impacts of climate change.

Acknowledging the Austrian government’s Hydrogen Strategy and India’s National Green Hydrogen Mission aimed at addressing energy transition challenges, both leaders endorsed a comprehensive partnership involving companies and Research and Development institutions from both countries in renewable and green hydrogen initiatives, according to a press release from the PMO.

The leaders underscored the importance of research, scientific collaborations, technology partnerships, and innovation in advancing bilateral ties, advocating exploration of such opportunities. They also highlighted the necessity for enhanced collaboration to develop and commercialize technologies in identified sectors through innovative business and R&D partnership models, as per the PMO press release.

In the realm of economic partnership, both nations welcomed the inaugural high-level bilateral Business Forum held in Vienna during the visit, which saw participation from CEOs of several companies. PM Modi and Chancellor Nehammer addressed the Forum, encouraging business representatives to forge dynamic new partnerships across various sectors.

Furthermore, the leaders welcomed initiatives like the Start-Up Bridge, established during the Austrian Minister of Labour and Economy’s visit to India in February 2024 and the subsequent visit of Indian start-ups to Austria in June 2024, aimed at connecting the innovation and start-up ecosystems of both countries.

They identified several environmental technologies for targeted cooperation, including clean transportation, water and wastewater management, waste management, and renewable energy, underscoring the importance of public and private institutions extending financing to support expanded engagement in these sectors. They also recognized the increasing role of digital technologies in industrial processes, particularly in advancing sustainable economic practices (Industry 4.0).

PM Modi’s visit to Austria is historically significant as the first by an Indian Prime Minister in 41 years, since Indira Gandhi’s visit in 1983. This visit follows his recent official trip to Russia, where he met with President Vladimir Putin, and coincides with the 75th anniversary of diplomatic relations between India and Austria.

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