|Britain's International Trade Secretary Anne-Marie Trevelyan delivers a speech at the Science Museum in London on Oct 19, 2021. (File photo by=AFP/Pool/Getty Images Europe/Leon Neal)|
[Asia News = Reporter Reakkana] LONDON: Britain and India will on Thursday (Jan 13) formally launch free trade agreement talks in New Delhi, seeking freer movement of goods and people with a deal projected to increase bilateral trade by billions of pounds.
Britain has made a deal with India one of its post-Brexit priorities as, free from the European Union's common trade policy, ministers look to gear trade policy towards faster-growing economies around the Indo-Pacific region. Indian trade minister Piyush Goyal and his British counterpart Anne-Marie Trevelyan will meet in New Delhi on Thursday, with the first round of negotiations beginning next week. "A deal with India is a golden opportunity to put UK businesses at the front of the queue as the Indian economy continues to grow rapidly," Trevelyan said in a statement.
Britain said the deal could almost double British exports to India, and by 2035 boost total trade by £28 billion (US$38.3 billion) per year. Total trade in 2019 was worth £23 billion, according to British statistics. Ministers want to tap into the wealth of India's middle classes and their appetite for premium British products like Scotch Whisky. Meanwhile, India and former colonial power Britain already share strong trade ties, and more than a million people of Indian origin live in Britain after decades of migration.