The Labour Party aims to deepen UK-India cooperation, says shadow deputy PM Angela Rayner

Tuesday 27th February 2024 12:33 EST

Shadow Deputy PM Angela Rayner recently met S Jaishankar, Minister of External Affairs of India. 

Reflecting on India's trajectory toward becoming the world's third-largest economy, Rayner acknowledged the progress, attributing it partly to India's policies recognising women's roles. She expressed the desire for both nations to build on their shared history and advance the trade agreement.

In a past interview with PTI during the Raisina Dialogue in Delhi, Rayner highlighted her 2007 visit to India, witnessing the nation's transformation and economic ascent.

Rayner said, "I first visited (India) in 2007 and to see the transformation that has happened and to see India on course to be the third largest economy, it just shows how amazing India has done and the progress that has been made." 

"Part of that is about the policies that the government has introduced around recognising women's role and not just in terms of women's role in society but how crucial it is for the economy. If you want to grow in the economy, then having women in empowerment is crucial to that," she said. 

Addressing Prime Minister Narendra Modi's focus on women-led development, Rayner stressed the importance of societal encouragement and legislative support for women's inclusion in all spheres, emphasising the need for enforcement. Rayner advocated for women's representation in senior leadership and business roles, praising India's strides in this direction.

Regarding the Labour Party's stance on UK-India ties, Rayner emphasised a desire to bolster cooperation for mutual prosperity, acknowledging the significant contribution of the Indian diaspora to the UK's economy and culture.

Rayner underscored Labour's evolution under Keir Starmer's leadership, expressing optimism for the party's prospects in the upcoming UK elections, expected to occur by January 28, 2025.

Addressing India's role in global stability amidst conflicts, Rayner emphasised the collective responsibility to pursue peace and reconciliation. She said the UK's collaboration with partners like India to ensure global security and opportunities for all.

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