HomeBusinessIndia-UK FTA talks will go very, very quickly, says Mayor Andy Street

India-UK FTA talks will go very, very quickly, says Mayor Andy Street

The negotiations between India and the UK to strike a free trade agreement (FTA), which was launched final week, will conclude shortly attributable to an “absolute agreement” on the senior political degree, the Mayor for the West Midlands area of England has mentioned.

Andy Street, who’s answerable for the West Midlands Combined Authority that covers a few of England’s main industrial hubs of Birmingham and Coventry, expects his area to massively profit from such an FTA.

The UK’s Department for International Trade (DIT) confirmed on Thursday that the FTA talks kick-started nearly on Monday and the primary spherical is anticipated to final two weeks.

Last week, UK International Trade Secretary Anne-Marie Trevelyan met her Indian counterpart Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal in New Delhi to formally flag off the negotiations. While their joint assertion units an finish of the yr timeline for conclusion of negotiations, there’s a lot hypothesis that such discussions are more likely to drag on a lot additional.

“These things tend to be rather longer than one would wish,” Andy Street informed PTI.

“But I think there’s a critical ingredient here: there seems to me to be absolute agreement at the senior political level that this has got to happen as quickly as possible. It is surprising how that can unlock these deals more quickly than otherwise. So, I think this will go very, very quickly,” he mentioned.

The mayor for the area that’s dubbed the automotive capital of the UK, being dwelling to the nation’s largest automotive producer Jaguar Land Rover (JLR), believes the commerce talks with India maintain out nice tariff-free promise for the West Midlands.

He mentioned: “The massive image is that throughout the general UK-India relationship there’s an actual alternative for the West Midlands to construct a powerful buying and selling relationship. We’ve already acquired a very good relationship as a result of our single greatest firm, Jaguar Land Rover, is owned by Tata.

“So, there’s an incredible Indian investment here and what we believe is that there’ll be many, many more opportunities particularly in sectors where we are very strong – automotive, net zero – overlap perfectly with the Indian economy.”

With its automotive cluster, 50 per cent of the analysis and growth (R&D) for the sector is completed in and round Birmingham.

“This is the region that will gain most. We’ve seen JLR turning to electric and also electric taxis being built, there’s electric motorcycles. So, this sector is becoming really, really strong here. Of course, the absence of tariffs with India will enable us to really work with the innovators,” mentioned the Mayor.

According to official statistics, the West Midlands is second after London and the south east of England by way of inward investments from India. Besides JLR, among the different Indian firms situated within the area embody software program providers main Infosys and TVS Motors, which just lately acquired Birmingham-based Norton Motorcycles.

“We are very confident that we have got the strength that we can build on the back of that FTA. But it doesn’t stop businesses developing before an FTA is done. We’ve got big aspirations at the moment with a number of Indian companies, Infosys being one, where we are expecting to do an investment deal well before we move to the formality of the FTA,” mentioned Street.

As the drive behind the creation of the West Midlands India Partnership (WMIP) final yr to construct on the sturdy Indian diaspora base of the area, the businessman-turned-politician flagged commerce, tourism, enterprise and academia because the areas with “huge opportunities to do more”.

With a agency deal with the Commonwealth Games, scheduled for July-August in Birmingham, the area’s Mayor expressed his pleasure at enjoying host as a “good part of the world” comes along with full stadiums and spectators within the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The baton for the 2022 Games was in New Delhi to coincide with Trevelyan’s go to to flag off the FTA talks.

“You think of 2022, for the West Midlands the high point will be the opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games on July 28. I would extend an invitation to India because it will very much tell the story of a part of the world that is very proud of its links with India and other Commonwealth countries,” mentioned Street.

“We are looking forward to about a million visitors and about a billion people observing this on television, the biggest audience being in India. This is a perfect way to showcase to Indians, who understand the UK very well given the strength of the diaspora, how a region not always in the limelight has developed and what it offers. I hope it encourages more leisure visits and also business visits in the future,” he mentioned.



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Most Popular