PM Modi-PM Boris Johnson Virtual Meet: UK & India Strengthen Bilateral Ties

Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Prime Minister Narendra Modi have agreed on ambitious plans for the next decade of the UK-India relationship. Among them is the ‘2030 roadmap’ which includes commitments to deepen cooperation on health, climate, trade, education, science and technology, and defence.

The British and Indian Prime Ministers have made a historic commitment to strengthen work between the UK and India over the next decade, bringing the countries, economies and people closer together and boosting cooperation in areas that matter to both countries.

During a virtual meeting, the two leaders agreed a ‘2030 Roadmap’ which will provide a framework for UK-India relations across health, climate, trade, education, science and technology, and defence.

The Roadmap includes commitments to:

  • Expand the UK-India health partnership to enhance global health security and pandemic resilience. This includes firming up international supply chains to ensure critical medicines, vaccines and other medical products reach those who need them most.
  • Work together to ensure an ambitious outcome at COP26 and expand the UK-India partnership on tackling climate change, including accelerating the development of clean energy and transport and new technology, protecting nature and biodiversity and helping developing countries adapt to the impact of climate change.
  • Deepen the economic relationship between the UK and India through an Enhanced Trade Partnership and confirming our intent to negotiate a Free Trade Agreement with a view to doubling UK-India trade over the next decade.
  • Increase cooperation between British and Indian universities on crucial research in areas like health, emerging technologies, and climate science – and bringing enterprises together to propel ground-breaking innovations to communities that need them most. This includes the launch of a UK-India Global Innovation Partnership and the extension of the UK-India Education and Research Initiative (UKIERI).
  • Cooperate closely to tackle threats to our shared security in all their forms.
  • Enhance migration relationship, to make it easier for British and Indian nationals to live and work in each other’s countries.

The two countries also agreed to elevate the status of the relationship to a ‘Comprehensive Strategic Partnership’.

There are also more Indian companies in the UK than in the rest of Europe combined and a vibrant Indian diaspora of 1.6 million Brits sharing deep connections between our countries.

Over the last week British business, civil society and the wider public have demonstrated the strength of the relationship between the UK and India by donating much-needed medical supplies to the country. During their call PM Boris Johnson and Prime Minister Modi agreed to continue to work together on our shared fight against coronavirus. They pointed to the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, currently being produced by India’s Serum Institute, as an example of the power of UK-India cooperation.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: “The UK and India share many fundamental values. The UK is one of the oldest democracies, and India is the world’s largest. We are both committed members of the Commonwealth. And there is a living bridge uniting the people of our countries. In the last week the British people have stepped up in their thousands to support our Indian friends during this terrible time in a demonstration of the deep connection between the UK and India”

British High Commissioner to India Alex Ellis has said: “The scope of the 2030 Roadmap makes absolutely clear how much the UK and India can and must do together. This is a defining moment in the UK-India partnership, as we look to rebuild from the economic and health impacts of Covid-19, and lay the foundations for a secure and prosperous decade”

PM Modi expressed his desire to be able to welcome Prime Minister Johnson in India as per his convenience after the situation stabilizes. Prime Minister Johnson also reiterated his invitation to Prime Minister Modi to visit UK for the G-7 Summit.

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