Which PM would be better for UK India Relations?

Alpesh Patel Wednesday 10th August 2022 10:17 EDT

The Conservative Party members choose the leader of their party. But the impact goes beyond that and the Conservative Friends of India are hosting hustings with the two contenders.


I’ve examined some of the recent media comments on the bilateral relationship.



  • "Despite the uncertainty over Brexit the number of Indian firms operating in the UK increased from 800 in FY2017-18 to 850 during FY2019-20, employing over 110,793 people. The UK is the largest European source of remittances to India and is the sixth-largest FDI source with a cumulative equity investment of US$29.6 billion during April 2000 and September 2020, accounting for around 6 percent of total FDI into India during this period The services sector attracted the highest FDI, accounting for a 10.15 percent share of total investment from the UK," noted Deloitte in a report.

Source- The Times of India


Both Rishi and Liz will want this trend to continue.



  • "PM Modi and PM Johnson have enjoyed a very close friendship. UK is an important strategic partner and we have shared a multifaceted partnership and relationship, which India would like to continue as it is based on links at various levels between our people as well as various verticals as we discussed, as part of our partnership," , the Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Arindam Bagchi.

Source- The Economic Times News


The PM Johnson relationship was very close. Liz has visited India several times with DIT and Foreign Office and of course Rishi is of Indian origin. You’d expect the latter factor to be a visual boost turning into real terms boost.


  • “This could double our trade and investment by the end of the decade, driving down prices for consumers, and increasing wages across the UK by as much as GBP 3 billion,” said Johnson, with reference to the FTA

Source- Outlook


Both PM’s may delay this to Christmas from Diwali to get all the items meaningfully across the line.


  • “India is an incredible rising power in Asia, with one of the fastest growing economies in the world – already worth GBP 2.25 trillion – and set to be the world’s third largest economy by 2050. India is also our biggest partner in the Indo-Pacific, which is increasingly the geopolitical centre of the world, with two-thirds of humanity, and a third of the global economy – and that share is rising every year,” Johnson said, during his India visit.

Source- Outlook


From a security and defence perspective, since Rishi correctly sees China the number one threat to the UK he may pivot more to India than even Johnson did and more than Truss would.



  • As part of a broadening partnership, the implementation arrangements of the India-UK Global Innovation Partnership (GIP) in the field of trilateral development cooperation have been finalised. India and the UK will co-finance up to $100 million over 14 years to support the transfer and scale up of climate-smart inclusive innovations from India to third countries in Asia, Africa and the Indo-Pacific. This, Modi believes, will be useful for our start-ups and MSME sector in exploring new markets, and in making their innovations global.

          Source - News18


  • “Having been born in India, a proud British citizen, and having spent time as Secretary of State for International Development, I am committed that this COP will deliver for the communities most vulnerable to climate change.”

Alok Sharma, UK Cabinet Minister &COP26 President

        Source - Iglobal desk

On the environment – Alok has said he would resign if either PM did not move forward and India is critical to this. Again both Truss and Sunak would look to India.


Environment, trade, security. Whilst these are just three areas – I expect both countries to be even closer. Like all American Presidents with Irish roots thereby benefitting Ireland US relations, so too the clincher will be Rishi’s roots.

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