London mayor Sadiq Khan will be arriving in Mumbai tomorrow as part of his first official tour to three Indian cities to promote the British capital’s resilience and strengths post-Brexit. Apart from Mumbai, Khan would be visiting Delhi and Amritsar in India and then fly to Lahore, Islamabad and Karachi in Pakistan on his six-day tour to six cities. As part of the Indian leg of the trade mission aimed at promoting new business links between India and London, the London mayor has a series of meetings planned with senior politicians, business leaders, regional leaders as well as Bollywood personalities. His central message will be that the British capital remains open to Indian talent post-Brexit. “Following last year’s EU referendum, it is far more important to get the message of London is open out far and wide and I will be taking that message to India and Pakistan,” he said on the eve of his visit. Khan would be taking the Jet Airways’ recently launched third direct London-Mumbai flight.
“Jet Airways is doing their bit to ensure that the London-India relationship really takes off. The new flight comes as a major boost for the relationship between our two countries and an opportunity to not only deepen and expand our economic ties but to forge even closer social and cultural ties too,” he said. Mumbai-headquartered Jet Airways recently added a third direct flight between London and Mumbai, taking the total number of direct flights between London and India to four – with two existing direct routes to Mumbai and one to Delhi. Jet Airways’s CEO, Vinay Dube, said it reflects the confidence the company has in the robustness of the UK market.
“Whenever people in India think about travelling abroad, the very first city that comes to mind is London. At Jet Airways, we try and follow our customers, and want to play our part in bringing India and the UK closer together,” he said. “The UK is very important to us. The mayor is going on a trade mission and there is a wide spectrum of travellers on this circuit who are flying Jet. Every aspect is growing,” he said. The mayor of London will be accompanied by his Deputy Mayor for Business, Rajesh Agrawal. Their packed itinerary in India will include discussions on business and investment, infrastructure and the environment as well as visas and other opportunities to work together more closely.