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India-Iceland strengthen trade ties
New Delhi, Jan 14 (Agencies):
Published on 15 Jan. 2010 1:09 AM IST
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President of Iceland Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson and his wife, Dorrit Moussaieff, are currently on an official visit to India. The presidential couple arrived in Mumbai yesterday, where they visited a school on wheels in one of the city’s poorer districts. The president and his wife visit the Door Step School in Mumbai where the students performed a banjara dance. After a symposium on projects in the field of technology, energy and trade, agreements between Icelandic and Indian geothermal and energy companies were signed, Fréttabladid reports. The president and his entourage also visited a rehabilitation center where Icelandic prosthetics company Össur presented its products. Last night, the governor of the state of Maharashtra held a celebratory dinner in the president’s honor. The president will also travel to New Delhi and Bangalore. President of Iceland, Dr. Olafur Ragnar Grimsson has been conferred with prestigious Jawaharlal Nehru Award for International Understanding for 2007. The award was presented by President, Mrs. Pratibha Devisingh Patil at a function in New Delhi today. Speaking on the occasion, Mrs. Patil called for gloabl cooperation to meet the challenges posed by poverty, hunger, disease, global warming and terrorism. She said, global leaders should work together in a manner that serves human progress for prosperity and welfare to promote mutual understanding among them. She appreciated President Grimsson’s effort for close association and friendship with India for over 25 years in promoting India-Iceland relations. Accepting the award, Dr. Grimsson recalled Pandit Nehru’s contribution towards democracy and world peace and said Nehru representted a journey that proved demoracy is stronger than armed suppression and dialogue based on learning is a brighter beacon. He offered Iceland’s help in the field of renewable energy and preservation of glacier and water resources. Vice President, Mohd. Hamid Ansari and Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, UPA Chairperson, Mrs. Sonia Gandhi and other dignitaries were also present on the occasion. Iceland President Olafur Ragnar Grimsson hopes that India will enhance cooperation with Iceland in clean energy, IT and oil exploration in the near future. “Iceland has tremendous potential in the areas of clean energy, oil exploration and IT and I have confidence that India and the state of Maharashtra will enhance cooperation with us in these sectors in the near future,” Grimsson said while speaking to Maharashtra Governor S C Jamir last night. Grimsson, who is currently touring India, was in Mumbai for two days and attended the dinner hosted by the Governor yesterday, a Raj Bhavan release said. The President of Iceland said during his ongoing visit, he has sensed a new spirit of confidence in India. Iceland admires India’s diverse culture, history and its modern achievements, he said. He said it was amazing to see democracy serving as a guiding spirit in India, a country of more than one billion people. Welcoming Grimsson, Jamir said as the leading industrial state of India, Maharashtra needs surplus power. The state welcomes Iceland’s cooperation in clean energy and other sectors, Jamir said. Those attended Governor’s dinner included Iceland President’s wife Dorrit Moussaieff and the ministerial delegation accompanying him.

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