May 30, 2017 / 12:51 PM / 3 years ago

Germany's Merkel calls for faster progress on EU-India trade deal

German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel and India's Minister of State for External Affairs Mobashar Jawad Akbar sign documents next to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and German Chancellor Angela Merkel at a ceremony during the 4th round of German-Indian government consultation at the Chancellery in Berlin, Germany, May 30, 2017. REUTERS/Hannibal Hanschke

BERLIN (Reuters) - Germany will push hard in Brussels for progress to be made on a free-trade agreement between India and the European Union, Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Tuesday in a speech warning of growing “protectionist tendencies” worldwide.

“It’s important to us that we make progress on the German-Indian, or rather EU-Indian free trade agreement,” she said at a Berlin business forum where she shared a platform with her Indian counterpart Narendra Modi. “We will do a major push in Brussels to ensure that these negotiations progress again.”

Her remarks come after U.S. President Donald Trump repeated his criticism of Germany’s trade surplus with his country, tweeting that the “MASSIVE” U.S. trade deficit with Europe’s largest economy “will change”.

Modi told the forum that economic collaboration between Germany and India was still “below full potential”.

Reporting By Thomas Escritt, Editing by Michelle Martin

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