Belgian royal couple arrives on seven-day visit to India

New Delhi: King Philippe and Queen Mathilde of Belgium arrived in New Delhi on Sunday for a seven-day visit.

This is King Philippe’s maiden visit to the country following his ascension to the throne in 2013.

The royals will begin their India trip with a visit to Agra on Monday.

They have been accompanied by six ministers and a high-powered business delegation, comprising CEOs of 86 Belgian companies, 13 chiefs of academic institutions and 29 members from media.

“The visit would further strengthen the historical strong ties between the two countries. Belgium was also among the first European countries to establish a diplomatic mission in India after Independence,” a press release by Ministry of External Affairs stated.

India is Belgium’s second largest export destination and third largest trade partner outside European Union.

In 2016-17, bilateral trade between the two nations amounted to $13.28 billion of which exports from India to Belgium accounted for $5.65 billion, while imports from Belgium accounted for $6.62 billion.