Neville Prior

India & UK : A Great Partnership Possible

Neville Prior  18 February 2013 09:41:02 AM
In what can be seen as preparation for further changes in the world order,  David Cameron has said the UK can forge one of "the great partnerships of the 21st century" with India, as he arrived in Mumbai to begin a three-day visit. With business the main focus, he leads what 10 Downing Street says is the largest trade delegation taken on an overseas trip by a prime minister. Meanwhile, Mr Cameron has appeared to indicate that the UK's visa process could be made easier for Indian businesses.

Speaking at the first stop on his trip, a question and answer session at Unilever headquarters in Mumbai, he told the audience: "India's rise is going to be one of the great phenomena of this century and it is incredibly impressive to see." "Britain wants to be your partner of choice. We've only just started on the sort of partnership that we could build. "As far as I'm concerned, the sky is the limit."

Another of the visit's aims is to address controversy over recent toughening of UK visa rules. Mr Cameron told his audience that there was no limit on the number of Indian students that could come to British universities, so long as they had an English language qualification and a place to study. In an interview just ahead of the trip with the Hindustan Times - in which he said Britain and India could be "one of the great partnerships of the 21st Century" - he stressed how there was a "warm welcome" for those who wanted to make a "positive contribution" to the UK. The prime minister said he was hoping to "put an even more attractive offer on the table" when it came to visa services to Indian business travellers.

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