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India, Netherlands complement each other extremely well, make a great team: King Willem

twitter-logoPTI | October 15, 2019 | Updated 22:11 IST

(Eds: Adds details) New Delhi, Oct 15 (PTI) Dutch King Willem-Alexander on Tuesday said India and the Netherlands complement each other extremely well and have the potential to make each other stronger in the areas of technology and innovation. Speaking at the inaugural session of the India-Netherlands Technology Summit, the King said for 10 years now, the two countries have been close partners in the field of innovation. He said the Netherlands has extensive knowledge in the areas of agriculture, water and climate action and it can be used for finding solutions to some of the problems being faced by India such as flood and drought. Another area where he felt that the two countries could share their experiences and approach was in terms of public private partnerships. "India and Netherlands complement each other extremely well and have the potential to make each (other) even stronger. We make a great team," he added. Eight collaborations were announced between the two countries during the technology summit in different areas, including waste-to-value projects, healthcare, pollution prevention and efficient water use in Kanpur-Unnao leather cluster. Referring to his visit on Monday to a laboratory of an Indo-Dutch project that seeks to treat dirty water of the Barapullah drain before it falls into Yamuna, he said the experts of the two countries have been successful in making the drain cleaner and they are also working to make the water suitable for reuse. King Alexander said innovation does not always come from government offices and science laboratories. "Just as often it comes from local communities, farmers, family businesses, hospitals, civil society and driven individuals. Governments, business sectors, academia and ordinary individuals are all working on solutions," he said. The trick, he said, is to bring all these positive forces together. The path to solution starts with curiosity and the ability to listen, he added. "We respect each other's knowledge, tradition and culture. There are no standard solutions. Innovation is the product of human effort and that is why it is so important to invest in a long-term relationship in partners you trust, partners who can add value to your excellence. For Netherlands, India is such a partner," he said. Speaking at the event, Union Science and Technology Minister Harsh Vardhan highlighted the shared heritage and common beliefs between the two countries. "Countries such as ours need to combine forces to seek sustainable answers to pressing global issues. These include poverty, hunger, job creation, energy security, human rights, gender inequality. At the same time we need to work together on climate change, terrorism, and depletion of natural resources," he said. He added that India and the Netherlands were celebrating 10 years of cooperation in science, technology and innovation space, especially in areas such as urban water management, smart energy grids, and anti-microbial resistance, among others. PTI PR PR SMN SMN

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