Modi urges Spanish firms to invest in India

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday urged Spanish firms to invest in India, saying the fast-growing country offered “many opportunities” in areas ranging from tourism to energy.

“India is an enormous country and it offers many opportunities to Spanish firms in all sectors,” he said in Hindi as he arrived at Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy’s official residence in Madrid for talks.

“I invite Spanish firms to participate in our development,” he added.

Modi, who arrived in Spain late on Tuesday from Germany, his first stop on a four-nation Europe tour, was scheduled to meet with King Felipe VI later on Wednesday.

He was also to meet Spanish business leaders as part of his push to drum up more foreign investment in India, the world’s fastest-growing major economy.

“Spanish firms are global leaders in sectors that are a priority for us. We want to attract tourism, infrastructure, energy and defence firms,” Modi said in an interview published in Spanish business daily Expansion.

Spain is India’s seventh largest trading partner in the European Union.

Two-way trade totalled 4.72 billion euros ($5.27 billion) in 2016, an 8.5 percent increase over the previous year, of which Spanish exports made up nearly 1.26 billion euros.

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