Strengthening partnership, anti-terror tactics, climate change, trade ties and joint ventures in the defence sector will be topping the agenda of British Prime Minister Theresa May’s visit to India next month.
Accompanied by a large business delegation, May is arriving here on November 6 for her three-day maiden visit to India. According to the ministry of external affairs, “This will be her first bilateral visit outside Europe. She will hold talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and review all aspects of India-UK Strategic Partnership. The Joint Economic and Trade Committee meeting will be held on the side-lines of the visit.”
While in India, the visiting leader will hold discussions with Modi and a number of commercial deals are expected to be signed during the visit. Also, both countries would discuss elevation of the defence relationship with more joint military exercises and co-operation on technology and defence manufacturing, and a possibility of India going for a follow on order of 20 ‘Hawk’ Advanced Jet Trainers to be assembled in Bengaluru.
At the delegation level talks the two sides are expected to chalk out the modalities of biennial military exercise programme, starting with the Naval, Army and Air Force exercises planned for 2017 in India.
Both leaders will inaugurate the India-UK Tech Summit in New Delhi jointly hosted by the CII and the Department of Science and Technology — which will an opportunity for the two sides to strengthen business to business engagement in the areas of technology, entrepreneurship and innovation, design, IPRs and higher education.
The decision to have a summit level talks was taken during Modi’s visit to that country in November last year, when he had invited British defence companies to manufacture military hardware in India.
Top industry representatives including representatives of Geolang, a cyber-security company based in Cardiff in Wales, Torftech, a biomass energy company based in southeast England, and Telensa, a company focused on high-tech wireless street lighting systems, based in Cambridge, will accompany May.