Negotiations for an ambitious free-trade deal between Britain and India are “well advanced”, said Sir Tariq Ahmed, Britain’s foreign secretary for South Asia, during a parliamentary debate in the House of Lords in London. said in Mr Ahmed added that his next FTA negotiations between New Delhi and London would begin soon, and his fellow MPs were skeptical of India’s ambitious economic status and New Delhi’s G20 presidency as his It cites it as a decisive factor to ensure an FTA agreement.
Successive governments, led by various British prime ministers, have in the past argued that India is the center of British foreign policy, given that it is one of the world’s largest economies.
Mr Ahmad told the Senate that “it is true that the UK-India relationship is central to the UK’s foreign policy as we build and strengthen this relationship”, arguing that New Delhi-London’s support for the strengthening of ties would be unacceptable. The British stance was repeated.
“As one of the world’s largest and fastest growing economies, India is an important partner for the UK. We are also considering lowering non-tariff barriers on medical devices to benefit UK exporters. It is an ambitious and balanced free trade deal,” he said.
Ahmad was speaking at a debate in the House of Lords on Thursday entitled ‘The Importance of British-Indian Relations’.
A strong trade deal with India could boost the UK economy by billions of pounds in the long term and help families across the country, he said.
“Reducing bureaucracy and high tariffs could make it easier and cheaper for British companies to sell in India, boosting growth and boosting employment,” he added. .
Six FTA negotiations held so far
The minister said India and the UK have completed six rounds of talks so far. He said that as a sign of mutual agreement between New Delhi and London, both sides ensured that his FTA deal would be properly considered and not rushed.
“We assure them that we are dealing with them specifically, but that the signed trade agreements are properly considered, not hastily, and that all chapters are thoroughly discussed. It was a mutual agreement, a deal of mutual benefit to both countries and their peoples,” the minister said.
According to official UK government data, bilateral trade between India and the UK now amounts to about £29.6 billion ($36.67 billion) annually.
UK-India FTA Negotiations: From Johnson to Snak via Truss
London and New Delhi formally began negotiations for a free trade agreement in January 2022, when Prime Minister Boris Johnson was in the lead. The talks came after years of backroom negotiations between the two companies, according to The Times.
Johnson set Diwali as the deadline for a free trade deal with India. In the midst of political uncertainty with frequent changes of office at 10 Downing Street, the original deadline was not met for unspecified reasons.
Current Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has pledged to work “with the pace” towards an FTA without “sacrificing quality for speed” after the Diwali deadline has passed.
Sir Karan Vilimoria spoke of the need for a large Prime Minister’s delegation to India and asked Prime Minister Sunak to lead the delegation “as soon as possible”.
“Today, India is chairing the G20. Today, India has a vision of becoming the second largest economy in the world with a GDP of $32 billion in the next 25 years,” he said. I was.
“An Indian express train has left its station, now the fastest train in the world and the fastest growing major economy in the world. The UK will be our most trusted friend and partner for decades to come. must be,” he added.
(With input from agency)
you can Write to winews.com now And be part of the community.Share your stories and opinions with us here.