Outlining great potential for cooperation with India, Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Lofven on Saturday said the global business focus has shifted to India from China.
"I see many areas of cooperation (with India). First is innovation. There is great potential for cooperation in this field. Stockholm is now one of the cleanest capitals in the world from being a heavily polluted one 100 years ago, he said at the launch of Make in India (MII) Week here this evening.
"Let us be guided by Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore who said ‘you cannot cross the ocean merely by staring at the sea’. I am sure Make in India will be a centrepiece of the cooperation," Lofven maintained.
"The world’s eyes are now on India. They used to be on China earlier, but they are now on India," he said.
Speaking on the occasion, Prime Minister of Finland Juha Sipila said its truly great to be in India. Lauding the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Sipila said he has set a remarkable goal on the energy front.
"Renewable energy is the core of future. The world needs it. Biomass is another sector where several Finnish companies can contribute in India," he said.
Earlier, Modi and Lofven jointly inaugurated the Sweden Country Pavilion at the MII meet.
Lofven is accompanied by a high-level delegation consisting of government officials, heads of agencies and industry leaders. The Scandinavian nation has one of the largest delegations at the jamboree.
"The Swedish industry has always believed in India as a perfect trading partner, right from the time Ericsson laid the first cables in 1903 to the current times when our companies are looking to raise their investments and their manufacturing units here," Swedish Ambassador to India Harald Sandberg said.
There are some 160 Swedish companies operating in India employing 160,000 people directly and 1.1 million indirectly. Over 18 Swedish companies are participating in the mega event, where the theme of its pavilion is ‘Smart Manufacturing’.
Swedish participants include ABB, Atlas Copco, Camfil, Ericsson, Ikea, Saab, Sandvik, SKF, TetraPak and Volvo.
"For Sweden, which is striving to be an open innovation-driven economy, India is a natural partner and Maharashtra is one of the most important hubs," said Fredrika Ornbrant, Consul General of Sweden in Mumbai.