Paraguay Paraguay-India - Page 18

paraguay The two nations pledged to work collectively against the menace of terrorism. “The leadership of Paraguay said that they are on the same page as India as far as the issue of terrorism is concerned and extended heartfelt condolences to those who had lost their loved ones in the Pulwama terror attack. They stated that India could always count on Paraguay´s support in the fi ght against terrorism and in voicing India’s concerns on terrorism in the international fora.” As the world battles climate change, India has made ambitious plans to incorporate renewable energy into its energy mix. The government has set a target of installing 100 GW of solar capacity by 2022 in the country. A target of installing 175 GW of renewable energy capacity by the year 2022 has been set, which includes 100 GW from solar, 60 GW from wind, 10 GW from bio-power and 5 GW from small hydro-power. 4 In this solar and wind energy are forming the main bulwark of India’s renewable energy drive. Paraguay established renewable energy target in its National Development Plan 2014–2030. The country’s goal is to reach 60 percent of renewable energy consumption in total energy consumption by 2030. Additionally, Paraguay aims to reduce by 20 percent consumption of fossil fuels in the country’s total energy consumption by the same year. 5 India, as part of the International Solar Alliance, is working with like-minded nations to collectively address key common challenges to the scaling up of solar energy. Paraguay has agreed to join the alliance providing another platform for promotion of investment and exchange of R&D. Paraguay has replaced all thermal power by hydropower in the 1970s. Now the country entirely relies on two hydroelectric plants for electricity. Collaboration in hydroelectric power generation would be one example of cooperation between the two as India along with its neighbours is setting up hydroelectricity plants and developing an energy exchange region. In the international arena, the two nations have similar views on addressing the issue of terrorism. Throughout the Delegation Level Talks during the Vice President’s visit, the Paraguayan leadership decried the brutal terrorist attack that took place in Pulwama. The two nations pledged to work collectively against the menace of terrorism. “The leadership of Paraguay said that they are on the same page as India as far as the issue of terrorism is concerned and extended heartfelt condolences to those who had lost their loved ones in the Pulwama terror attack. They stated that India could always count on Paraguay´s support in the fi ght against terrorism and in voicing India’s concerns on terrorism in the international fora.” 6 The above are but a few areas of cooperation between India and Paraguay. They provide with new areas of engagement and deepening of South-South Cooperation. India and Paraguay face many similar internal developmental challenges. These include high-income inequality, rising 18 • PARAGUAY 2019 population, unemployment and poor public health and education systems. They have a lot to learn from each other by engaging in similar work to isolate and scale up best practices in each of these sectors. The India economy has seen steady growth and it is predicted that, despite the slowdown, it will be one of the largest economies in the next two decades. The physical distance between India and Paraguay is no longer a barrier. Trade and investments have been growing well. Political exchanges have brought the relations into the spotlight; it is the right time to further cement them with a thriving people to people network. There are complementarities between India and Paraguay that need to be exploited to build a robust relationship for the future.  * Author is a Research Fellow, Indian Council of World Aff airs, New Delhi. Views expressed are personal. References: 1 Huma Siddiqui, “ LatAm outreach: Vice President Venkaiah Naidu to visit Paraguay, Costa Rica; here’s why it’s important,” https://www. financialexpress.com/defence/latam-outreach-vice-president-venkaiah- naidu-to-visit-paraguay-costa-rica-heres-why-its-important/1504471/, Accessed on 02 May 2019. 2 Ines Martinez Valinotti, “Paraguay: For investment and renewable energy,” http://diplomatonline.com/mag/2018/07/paraguay-for-investment- and-renewable-energy/, Accessed on 02 May 2019. 3 Ministry of External Aff airs, Government of India, “Joint Press Release on the visit of the Vice President of India to Paraguay,” https://www.mea.gov. in/bilateral-documents.htm?dtl/31120/Joint_Press_Release_on_the_visit_ of_the_Vice_President_of_India_to_Paraguay, Accessed on 02 May 2019. 4 Press Information Bureau, Government of India, Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, “A target of installing 175 GW of renewable energy capacity by the year 2022 has been set. 100 GW of solar capacity by 2022 in the country. The Government is promoting development of solar energy in the country by providing various fi scal and promotional incentives,” http://pib. nic.in/newsite/PrintRelease.aspx?relid=180728, Accessed on 03 May 2019. 5 International Energy Agency, “Paraguay’s National Development Plan 2014-2030,” https://www.iea.org/policiesandmeasures/pams/para- guay/name-157639-en.php?s=dHlwZT1yZSZzdGF0dXM9T2s,&return=P G5hdiBpZD0iYnJlYWRjcnVtYiI PGEgaHJlZj0iLyI-SG9tZTwvYT4gJnJh- cXVvOyA8YSBocmVmPSIvcG9saWNpZXNhbmRtZWFzdXJlcy8iPlBvb- GljaWVzIGFuZCBNZWFzdXJlczwvYT4gJnJhcXVvOyA8YSBocmVmP- SIvcG9saWNpZXNhbmRtZWFzdXJlcy9yZW5ld2FibGVlbmVyZ3kvIj5S- ZW5ld2FibGUgRW5lcmd5PC9hPjwvbmF2Pg, Accessed on 03 May 2019. 6 Press Information Bureau, Government of India, Vice President’s Secretariat, “Paraguay is an important partner of India in the Latin American and Caribbean region: Vice President,” http://pib.nic.in/newsite/ PrintRelease.aspx?relid=189232, ,Accessed on 02 May 2019.