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Excited about future of India-UK ties: Cameron
November 14, 2013, 10:14 am

[Getty Images]

It is the British PM’s third visit to the country as prime minister [Getty Images]

Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has held talks in New Delhi with his British counterpart David Cameron who is currently on a day long visit to the South Asian nation.

Mr Cameron said he was optimistic about the future of Britain’s ties with India during his third visit to the country as prime minister.

“We are one of the oldest democracies…We both have challenges to fight terrorism and we both want to be successes in this global economic race that we are engaged in. We have ties of the past — the history, the language and the culture. But it is the future that excites me, on what Britain and India can do together,” said the British prime minister.

The two leaders held consultations on improving bilateral and trade ties between the two nations.

“This is, I said, a short visit, so this is a government to government visit to India where my first priority is to come and see your prime minister,” said Mr Cameron.

Britain has just withdrawn a proposal to introduce a £3,000 visa bond for tourists who are on six-month tourist visa, a proposal that witnessed stiff opposition from India.

According to British government figures, between 1.5 million and two million people of Indian origin live in the UK, the largest ethnic group.

The United Kingdom is seeking closer economic ties with India and China, which, although part of a global slowdown, are still the fastest growing economies in the world.

British exports to India have risen by 25 per cent this year, while Indian exports to the UK have increased by 10 per cent.

In his visit to India in February, Mr Cameron said he wanted the relationship between the UK and India to be “one of the great partnerships of the 21st century”.

India has emerged as a major investor in Britain with Indian companies investing $19.92 billion in the UK.

More Indian investment comes to the UK than the rest of the European Union combined, according to UK government figures.

TATA Group is the largest manufacturing employer in the UK with 47,000 employees.

Cameron is set to attend the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in Colombo tomorrow.

Source: Agencies