German and Indian flag

© iStock.com/Derek Brumby und Colourbox

The annual meeting of the Indo-German Working Group on Quality Infrastructure was held in New Delhi on 15 and 16 January 2018. The meeting was chaired by the Indian Ministry for Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution and the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy, and it saw the two sides agreeing on strengthening key areas of trade by working more closely together on standardisation, certification and market surveillance.

State Secretary Matthias Machnig said: “Our cooperation on quality infrastructure is a sign of Germany’s and India’s strong economic relations, and shows our willingness to learn from each other. The closer our partnership becomes, the more important it is to find solutions that ease doing business. In Germany, industry and technical institutions share the driver’s seat as they work on developing and harmonising standards to meet the needs of a more digitalised world. We are delighted that our Indian partners appreciate this tried-and-trusted approach. Business and consumers benefit from our cooperation. The results achieved by the Working Group pave the way to more prosperity and consumer protection in the interests of our two countries.”

Secretary Shri Avinash K. Srivastava from the Indian Department of Consumer Affairs said: “Our bilateral dialogue deepens mutual understanding and trust, enabling us to work on issues that are relevant for the Indian and German industry as well as consumers. The Working Group works on highly relevant topics, and brings together experts from both countries, who for instance develop ideas on how to strengthen the market surveillance system in India.”

The Indo-German Working Group on Quality Infrastructure has met annually since 2013. It drafts solutions to technical challenges in bilateral trade. The aim is to strengthen the economic cooperation between the two countries in an increasingly digitised business environment. This year’s session focused on the automotive sector, electric mobility and charging infrastructure, Industrie 4.0, data privacy, IT security and safety standards for machinery. The intention is to work more closely together on these issues, thus strengthening international standardisation, deepening cooperation on market surveillance, and simplifying conformity assessment procedures between the two countries.

The meeting was attended by more than 50 German and Indian representatives of the private sector, of standardisation and accreditation bodies, including the Deutsches Insitut für Normung (DIN), the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS), the Indo-German Chamber of Commerce and various Indian government departments. The Working Group is well aligned to flagship programmes like ‘Make in India’ and ‘Digital India’.