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UK, India conform to step up defence, commerce cooperation | Enterprise and Economic system Information

Modi holds talks with Johnson on the British PM’s first go to to New Delhi since taking workplace in 2019.

The UK and India have agreed to step up defence and enterprise cooperation, with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson indicating a bilateral free-trade deal could possibly be wrapped up by October this yr.

On his first visit to the Indian capital since taking workplace in 2019, Johnson held talks along with his Indian counterpart, Narendra Modi, on methods to spice up safety ties between London and New Delhi, which buys greater than half of its army {hardware} from Russia.

“We had great talks which have strengthened our relationship in each manner,” Johnson informed a joint information briefing with Modi on Friday, on the finish of his two-day journey.

“We’ve got agreed a brand new and expanded defence and safety partnership, a decades-long dedication that won’t solely forge tighter bonds between us, however help your objective of ‘Make in India’,” he added, referring to the Indian premier’s home manufacturing push.

Modi in the meantime hailed Johnson’s go to – which got here as India marks its seventy fifth yr of independence – as “historic”.

“We mentioned a number of regional and worldwide developments and careworn a free, open, inclusive and rule-based order within the Indo-Pacific,” he stated.

Joint name for Ukraine ceasefire

Whereas actual particulars of the safety partnership between the 2 sides weren’t instantly out there, Johnson stated each international locations had agreed to work collectively in defence procurement “to fulfill threats throughout land, sea and air, area and cyber, together with partnering on new fighter jet know-how, maritime applied sciences to detect and reply to threats within the oceans”.

The UK’s efforts to bolster safety ties comply with an try final month by america to maneuver India away from Russia with its personal provide of extra defence and vitality gross sales after President Joe Biden referred to as New Delhi “considerably shaky” in performing in opposition to Moscow over its offensive in Ukraine.

Final month, India abstained from a United Nations vote condemning the invasion and has not imposed sanctions on Russia, taking a stance that sparked off a latest flurry of diplomatic exercise, together with a visit by Russia’s overseas minister.

Modi stated that he had mentioned the state of affairs in Ukraine with Johnson, with each side calling for a direct ceasefire and underscoring the significance of diplomacy to finish the battle.

In 2019, the UK’s commerce with India was value 23 billion kilos ($30bn), knowledge exhibits, and with the world’s second largest inhabitants of practically 1.4 billion, the south Asian large gives an unlimited pool of attainable prospects.

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