Iceland’s President Olafur Ragnar Grimsson and First Lady Dorrit Moussaieff are in India on an official state visit designed to coincide with the presentation of the Nehru Award in Delhi yesterday for his work on climate change.
The President’s arrival in India was heralded with a 21-gun salute and meetings with the Indian President Pratibha Patil and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. The couple also laid a wreath of flowers from the Icelandic nation on the Mahatma Ghandi memorial.
Economics, technology, science and energy were the main topics of conversation between the President and the Indian Prime Minister. The surprisingly long and close diplomatic, personal and business ties between the two republics, which are of a very similar age, was also discussed.
One of several specific examples of possible future co-operation was the idea of India using Iceland’s Keflavik Airport as a base of trading operations strategically located between Europe and North America.
Members of the Icelandic delegation are also holding talks with India’s Oil Minister and heads of the country’s biggest oil company to discuss potential oil production in Iceland’s Dragon Area.
A transcript of President Grimsson’s interesting Nehru Award acceptance speech can be read here.