Senior leaders of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) came together to deliberate the “Future of the UK-India Economic Relationship” on 8 July 2015 in London, and to celebrate 120 years of CII and the 50th anniversary of CBI.
Addressing the conference, Shri Ranjan Mathai, High Commissioner of India to the UK said, “The CII-CBI Conference is aptly timed now as the Indian economy and the UK economy both mark high levels of growth. The Government of India’s flagship initiatives provide us opportunities to leverage our synergies and collaborate on strengthening our robust business, trade and investment relationships. The CII delegations’ visit would help build upon our successful bilateral investment record, with both India and the UK being among the top investors in each other.”
CBI director-general John Cridland said, “We’ve reached an exciting chapter in the United Kingdom’s trading partnership with India, which is vitally important to our future growth and prosperity. The UK is the largest G20 investor in India, and there are hundreds of British businesses in the country. We now have a golden opportunity for even more companies from both countries to build the trading links that will drive our economies in the future.”
It is remarkable that British investment in India now stands at US $ 22.21 billion, accounting for 9% of India’s overall FDI between April 2000 and March 2015.
Kumar Iyer, British Deputy High Commissioner (Mumbai) emphasized the wider partnership, outlining an array of collaborative initiatives underway, specifically mentioning the Generation UK-India program as an important tool to facilitate exchanges between academia and industry.
Highlighting opportunities in the UK-India economic landscape, Sumit Mazumder, President, CII said that Prime Minister Modi’s Make in India campaign beckons the UK to be a partner in reinventing technology-driven manufacturing in India with British know-how. Industries such as Defence, Automotive and Pharmaceuticals will provide good opportunities for British firms.
India, too, has emerged as the third largest investor and a significant job creator in the UK economy. FDI from India to UK increased 65% through 122 projects and 9350 new and safeguarded jobs. A recent study by Grant Thornton in collaboration with CII, showed that about 800 Indian companies collectively sustain over 110,000 jobs in the UK.
The whole story lies in developing globally-competitive skills and enabling mobility of talent. British and Indian companies must become partners in upskilling local and global talent – jobs will be created naturally through new-age entrepreneurship” said Chandrajit Banerjee, Director General, CII.