Kemi Badenoch arrived in New Delhi on December 12 to “kickstart” the sixth round of FTA negotiations and hold bilateral talks with her Indian counterpart, Piyush Goyal.
The new round is the first formal meeting between the India-UK negotiating teams since July and the first since British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak took office.
His Trade Secretary will address both teams of senior negotiators ahead of the sixth round of formal negotiations, which will take place this week.
“Both countries have come to the table with the highest of ambitions and a willingness to collaborate toward a mutually beneficial agreement.” “I’m excited about the possibilities for British business,” Badenoch said.
India and the United Kingdom have the world’s fifth and sixth-largest economies, respectively. “We have a long history together and are in a strong position to strike a deal that will create jobs, stimulate growth, and strengthen our 29 billion pound trading relationship,” she added.
The UK Government stated that the FTA’s goal is to reach an agreement that reduces tariffs and expands opportunities for UK services such as financial and legal, making it easier for British businesses to sell to the Indian economy.
The UK trade secretary will also meet with business leaders in India to better understand their requirements for a “modern UK-India trade relationship.” This will include a meeting with envoPAP, a UK company investing more than £10 million in India to build a Fairtrade paper and packaging plant.
According to the UK’s Department for International Trade (DIT), strong growth in the Indian economy will increase UK exports to India by more than £9 billion by the middle of the next decade.
After the October deadline was missed amid political turmoil in the UK, Prime Minister Sunak committed to working “at pace” toward an FTA that does not “sacrifice quality for speed. “We will now work at a rapid pace with the Indian teams to resolve the issues and reach a mutually satisfactory conclusion.”