German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Photograph:( AFP )
Merkel also met Prime Minister Narendra Modi with whom she is expected to hold talks later in the day.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel kick-started her three-day visit in India on Friday by paying glowing tributes to Indo-German ties.
"I am delighted to be here in India. Germany-India are linked by very close ties. We have great respect for this vast country and its diversity," Merkel said after receiving a ceremonial reception at Rashtrapati Bhawan.
Merkel met Prime Minister Narendra Modi besides, President Ram Nath Kovind and Foreign Minister S Jaishankar.
Merkel is expected to hold talks with Modi on various bilateral issues and nearly 20 agreements are expected to be signed between the two countries.
She also paid tribute to Mahatma Gandhi at Rajghat.
This is what German Chancellor Angela Merkel wrote at Rajghat after paying tributes to father of the nation Mahatma Gandhi. pic.twitter.com/apFZVYfftV— Sidhant Sibal (@sidhant) November 1, 2019
Merkel arrived in New Delhi on Thursday to participate in the fifth India-Germany Inter-Governmental Consultations (IGC).
During their meeting, Modi and Merkel will exchange views on regional and global matters of mutual interest.
Both leaders will have a separate engagement with CEOs and business leaders of both countries, the MEA had said in a statement.
Merkel will also interact with Indian Women leaders and address a business forum. On Saturday, Merkel will pay a visit to Continental Automotive Components India Pvt Ltd facility in IMT Manesar in Gurgaon.
Germany is a leading trade and investment partner and Both leaders, Merkel and PM Modi, have met on the sidelines of multilateral meetings. In September, Merkel had met Modi on the sidelines of the 74th session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York.
The two leaders held wide-ranging dialogues on several issues.
In April last year, Modi made a brief stopover in Berlin and met Merkel after his visit to Sweden and Britain.
On Sunday, Merkel had informed that the focus of her talks with Modi would be on economic and trade relations, climate protection, and sustainable development, amongst other areas.
(With inputs from agencies)