48.The story of the UK’s recent relationship with India is primarily one of missed opportunities. In all fundamental respects, the UK is well placed to capitalise on a mutually beneficial relationship with India—so it is a disappointing reflection on recent UK governments that we have been losing out in term of influence and trade. There are certain practical steps the government must take to reset its relationship with India, in particular making it easier for Indians to visit the UK and to work or study here. But it is also vital that the government sets the right tone and sends strong messages. The UK is ready to do business with India, and to work together bilaterally and in multilateral forums as a partnership of equals. In an increasingly unstable world threatened by autocratic states with contempt for the rules-based international system, it is more important than ever before that the UK and India support each other—and our mutual allies. These messages are not complex but they are essential. The Government now needs to communicate them clearly and make sure that their words are backed by actions.
Published: 24 June 2019