To describe the EU-India relationship, an English adjective has been fondly used in the past: “underperforming”. After efforts to reach a free-trade agreement between Brussels and Delhi ended in 2013, neither side mustered the energy needed to make progress on cooperation. On the contrary, they largely ignored each other – until last year. The EU’s efforts to position itself as a weighty geopolitical player in Asia, the COVID-19 pandemic, and, not least, a strengthened China put the world’s most populous country back on the Brussels interest radar.
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