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Theresa May PM pushes Britain’s trade credentials in India visit

May described the potential for Britain’s ties with India as “limitless” at the India-UK Tech Summit.

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British Prime Minister Theresa May speaks with India's counterpart Narendra Modi as they attend The India-UK Tech Summit in New Delhi, on November 7, 2016 play

British Prime Minister Theresa May speaks with India's counterpart Narendra Modi as they attend The India-UK Tech Summit in New Delhi, on November 7, 2016

(AFP)

British Premier Theresa May on Monday insisted Britain would be a “global, outward-looking” trade partner and a passionate advocate of free trade following its decision to leave the European Union.

May, who arrived in New Delhi on Sunday on her first bilateral visit outside Europe as premier, stated at the India-UK Tech Summit.

Meanwhile, her predecessor David Cameron resigned after losing the referendum on Brexit in June.

May described the potential for Britain’s ties with India as “limitless.”

“I will be discussing with Prime Minister Narendra Modi how we can increase the detail and depth of trade and investment discussions.

“Also to identify what more we can do, now, to unleash our businesses, industries, exporters and investors.

“This does not need to wait for us to leave the EU,’’ May said.

She said that Britain would offer swifter clearance to business travellers from India at its borders under a new registered traveller’s scheme.

May’s talks with Modi would cover trade and investment and also include informal discussions on a free trade deal.

Issues such as terrorism, defense cooperation and climate change also feature high on the agenda.

Indian diplomats said Britain’s tightening of immigration rules which affected a large number of Indian students and workers in Britain are also expected to be discussed.

Trade between Britain and India was worth 21 billion dollars in 2015, but data showed a drop of about 26 per cent in the first quarter of 2016.

Britain is the largest G20 investor in India while India is the third-biggest source of foreign investment for Britain. 

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