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Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau Begins Weeklong India Visit


Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, his wife, Sophie Gregoire Trudeau, their sons Hadrien and Xavier, daughter Ella-Grace walk down an airstair upon their arrival at the Palam Air Force Station in New Delhi, India, Feb. 17, 2018.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau arrived in India on Saturday for a weeklong visit aimed at enhancing business ties between the two countries.

Trudeau and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi are also expected to focus on areas including civil nuclear cooperation, space, defense, energy and education.

Trudeau was received at New Delhi's Indira Gandhi International Airport by Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, a junior agriculture minister. A formal ceremony will be held on Feb. 23 before his talks with Modi, who visited Canada in April 2015.

"Wheels up for India and a busy visit, focused on creating good jobs and strengthening the deep connection between the people of our two countries," Trudeau tweeted on Friday before leaving for New Delhi with his family.

Canada has an estimated 1.4 million people of Indian origin.

During his visit, Trudeau will meet with top business leaders in Mumbai and visit key Indian monuments, including the Taj Mahal in Agra, the Golden Temple in Amritsar and the Jama Masjid in New Delhi.

At Davos last month, while President Donald Trump supported new tariffs on imports, Trudeau and Modi came out forcefully against a drift toward protectionism in the global economy.

In 2017, two-way merchandise trade between Canada and India amounted to $8.4 billion, split equally between exports to and imports from India, according to Indian media.

Canada mainly imports pearls, organic chemicals, pharmaceutical products, textiles, bicycles and motorcycles from India. It exports vegetables, paper, fertilizers, wood pulp, iron and steel and precious stones to India.

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