Defence

German warship docks in Mumbai, welcomed by Indian Navy; envoy stresses on free sea routes

By ET News

German naval frigate FGS Bayern (F217) docked in Mumbai on Friday even as the European country’s Ambassador to India said the Indo-Pacific region was of utmost importance and emphasised on free maritime routes. The warship, whose arrival indicates strong defence ties between the two nations, was welcomed by an Indian Navy band at a ceremony.

The F123 Brandenburg class frigate will dock in Mumbai for a day and also conduct a passing exercise with the Indian Navy, officials added.

Germany’s Ambassador to India Walter Lindner said his country and more and more European nations were convinced that the Indo-Pacific was one of the most important regions on the planet.

Sixty per cent of international trade goes through the Strait of Malacca and through the area, 50 per cent of the world’s population lives here, 50 per cent of the world’s GDP comes from this area, and three of the biggest economies – the US, China and Japan – are placed around this Pacific, the envoy noted.

“But on the other side, we have regional tensions. We have at least three nuclear powers here. So it is important you have free maritime, shipping routes, and on the other side, you have a peaceful area with stability…the stability where conflicts are solved with mutual understanding. That’s the message of our guidelines, which we brought out a year ago,” said Lindner.

“This ship’s visit shows that we are not just talking,” he added.

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