The NASSCOM and TechUK, the leading technology trade bodies of the two countries, today launched a new UK-India Tech Alliance during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the UK. The announcement is part of the UK-India Tech Partnership, finalised earlier today by Prime Minister Modi and his British counterpart Theresa May following their bilateral talks at Downing Street, which also includes the creation of a UK-India Tech Hub. The trade associations agreed on a memorandum of understanding (MoU) which will see the technology sectors from the UK and India further strengthen their relationship, developing stronger links, networks and joint platforms, helping enhance the skills of the technology workforce in both countries. “Tech is at the heart of this new relationship between our two countries and we welcome TechUK and NASSCOM’s (National Association of Software & Services Companies) commitment to working together to strengthen the skills base in both countries that will be key to driving economic growth, development and prosperity,” said Baroness Fairhead, minister in the UK Department for International Trade (DIT). “The UK-India Tech Alliance will be a key partner for government – providing a sounding board and expert advice for policy development to ensure that our governments nurture the growth we are seeing in this sector and beyond,” the country’s Minister of State for Trade and Export Promotion said.
‘The alliance is aimed at increasing collaboration on skills and new technologies, assisting policy development and encouraging innovation and will lay the groundwork for a roadmap which will be jointly presented in June. The new partnership between the UK and Indian tech industries will promote the growth of skills needed for a world where artificial intelligence, machine learning, big data analytics and cybersecurity will be major technology growth areas, NASSCOM said. Julian David, TechUK CEO, said: “This is an important milestone for both the UK and Indian tech sectors. We have long worked together, but we are now deepening those relationships and will be able to collaborate better to provide people with the skills and tools they need to flourish in the new world of work. “We’re delighted to see the governments of our two countries share our vision and taking key steps towards ensuring all our citizens benefit from the innovation that new technologies, like AI and machine learning, can provide.”
The UK-India Tech hub was first called for in November 2016 by TechUK and NASSCOM to identify and pair businesses, venture capital, universities and others to access routes to markets for British and Indian tech companies. Debjani Ghosh, President, NASSCOM, added: “This landmark MoU between NASSCOM and TechUK will equip people with cutting-edge skills in emerging technology fields such as AI and robotics. We are delighted that NASSCOM’s FutureSkills initiative will be the basis for improved collaboration between our IT industries. “It is imperative that we train the workforce for jobs of the future to remain relevant in the new global economy; providing the UK and India with a valuable competitive edge.”
The MoU commits the two organisations to exchange knowledge and learn lessons from the FutureSkills initiative launched by NASSCOM, explore the expansion of the FutureSkills platform, work together to strengthen people-to-people and business-to-business links between India and the UK, explore wider partnership to develop digital skills in both countries, and encourage Indian companies active in the UK to deliver digital skills training opportunities as part of the cross-sector Digital Skills Partnership convened by the UK government.