India-Denmark Relations


    In News

    • Recently, India & Denmark agreed to work together on green fuels including green hydrogen.

    Discussion in the Meeting

    • It discussed national strategic priorities and developments in Science, Technology, and Innovation of both countries with a special focus on green solutions of the future – strategy for investments in green research, technology, and innovation at the virtual meeting.
    • The 14th Joint S&T Committee emphasised on:
      • The development of bilateral collaboration on mission-driven research, innovation, and technology development, including climate and green transition, energy, water, waste, food, and so on as agreed by both parties while adopting the Green Strategic Partnership – Action Plan 2020-2025
      • They agreed to organise 3-4 webinars for partnership development and stressed on promoting calls for proposals in green fuels, including green hydrogen. 
      • They also reviewed the progress of the ongoing projects of last two joint calls being implemented in the areas of:
        • energy research; 
        • water; 
        • cyber-physical systems, and 
        • bio-resources and secondary agriculture.

    India Denmark Relations

    • About:
      • The then Prime Minister’s visit to Denmark in 1957 laid the foundation for a friendly relationship between India and Denmark.
      • Bilateral relations between India and Denmark are cordial and friendly.
      • The relations are based on synergies in political, economic, academic and research fields.
    • Prime-Ministerial level interactions:
      • India-Nordic Summit (April 2018): This meeting at the level of Prime Ministers was held after a gap of 9 years. Four MoUs were exchanged during the meeting, viz. 
        • MoU on cooperation in the fields of Animal Husbandry and Dairying, 
        • MoU in the field of Sustainable and Smart Urban Development, 
        • MoU on cooperation in Agricultural Research and Education, and 
        • MoU on Food Safety Cooperation.
      • Danish Prime Minister’s visit to India (January 2019): Two MoUs were exchanged during the meeting – 
        • MoU on Maritime Issues between the Ministry of Shipping of India and the Ministry of Industry, Business and Financial Affairs of Denmark and 
        • MoU between Imagine Panaji Smart City Development Limited and the Danish Embassy in New Delhi to establish an Urban Living Lab in Panaji, Goa. 
      • Virtual Summit (September 2020): A significant boost was given to the bilateral relationship with the launching of a Green Strategic Partnership between the two countries during the Summit.
      • Visit of Prime Minister of Denmark (Oct 2021): The two Prime Ministers also discussed regional and global developments, including the post-pandemic global economic recovery, Indo-Pacific and the situation in Afghanistan. 
    • Commercial and Economic Relations: 
      • As per Denmark Statistics, the total volume of bilateral trade in goods and services between India and Denmark was US$ 3.58 billion in 2020. 
      • Bilateral trade of commodities between India and Denmark has increased from US$ 1077.8 million in 2009-10 to US$ 1344 million in 2020-21. 
      • Major export items from India to Denmark are textiles, apparels and yarns related. Other items include road vehicles and components, metal goods, iron and steel, footwear, travel goods including leather goods, industrial machinery and accessories, chemical material and products, etc. 
      • Major Danish exports to India are medicinal/pharmaceutical goods, power generating machinery, industrial machinery, metal waste and ore, organic chemicals, etc.  
      • Bilateral trade in services between India and Denmark was US$ 2.32 billion in 2020 [import to India in services amounting to US$ 1.29 billion and export in the service sector by India valued at US$ 1.03 billion].
    • Important streets and public places named after Indian leaders: 
      • Gandhi Plaene (Gandhi Park), located at the junction of BorupsAlle and Hvidkildevej in Copenhagen, has a bronze statue of Mahatma Gandhi in sitting posture. 
      • The city of Aarhus has a Nehru Road near Aarhus University.
    • Estimated NRI/PIO: 
      • The size of the Indian community in Denmark, inclusive of both NRIs (13,368) and PIOs, (2,755) is 16,123 (as of November 2021).
    • Air links with India: 
      • There are presently no direct air-links between India and Denmark. 
      • Indirect connections are through Frankfurt, Paris, Amsterdam, etc. 
    • Visa requirements for officials: 
      • Holders of diplomatic and official passports do not require a visa to enter Denmark. 
      • Others require a visa. Visa may be required to transit through other EU countries while travelling to Denmark. 
      • The details and types of visas issued to tourists, businessmen and students are available on the Danish Embassy’s website.

    Way Ahead

    • The recently launched Green Strategic Partnership between India and Denmark will make our relationship even stronger.

    Green Hydrogen

    • It is defined as hydrogen produced by splitting water into hydrogen and oxygen using renewable electricity. 
    • This is a very different pathway compared to both grey and blue.
    • Hydrogen is the simplest and smallest element in the periodic table. No matter how it is produced, it ends up with the same carbon-free molecule. However, the pathways to produce it are very diverse, and so are the emissions of greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane (CH4).
    • Importance:
      • Green hydrogen is an important piece of the energy transition. 
      • It is not the next immediate step, as we first need to further accelerate the deployment of renewable electricity to decarbonize existing power systems, accelerate electrification of the energy sector to leverage low-cost renewable electricity, before finally decarbonize sectors that are difficult to electrify – like heavy industry, shipping and aviation – through green hydrogen.
      • It is important to note that today we produce a significant amount of grey hydrogen, with high CO2 (and methane) emissions: priority would be to start decarbonizing existing hydrogen demand, for example by replacing ammonia from natural gas with green ammonia.
    • Hurdle:
      • It is capital intensive: 
        • Therefore there is a need to reduce investment cost as well as the cost of investment, through scaling up manufacturing of renewable technologies and electrolysers, while creating a low-risk offtake to reduce the cost of capital for green hydrogen investments.


    Image Courtesy: weforum

    Source: PIB