The senior-most Indian-origin member of the British government Priti Patel has said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the UK next month will deepen the bonds between the two countries. Patel, who is leading the British government charge on the much-anticipated visit as Prime Minister David Cameron’s Indian Diaspora Champion, said the visit will mark the highlight of Modi’s many international tours this year. “This visit will deepen our existing bonds in education, business, security, culture and much more. In particular there is such an opportunity to showcase the relationship, show the vibrancy of the UK India Diaspora community in particular, celebrate their contribution and success and hard work.
“Prime Minister Modi is an inspirational leader and with the visit coinciding with Diwali, everyone in the Indian community is even more excited about this event. It is a great privilege to host him at such an auspicious time. He will get one of the best welcomes ever. Without a doubt the UK visit will be the icing on the cake,” she said, describing the event as a “personal highlight”. Patel, the UK’s minister for employment, highlighted how Modi’s first visit as prime minister will also mark a stronger collaboration on job creation and growth.
She said, “This visit will mark the beginning of a new era in our relationship. London is the most important financial centre in the world, which is an opportunity for India as it seeks investments to grow and access to finance and continues its creation of jobs and infrastructure for inclusive and sustainable development. “We are ranked incredibly highly when it comes to ease of doing business, whether it is our very low rates of corporation tax or our long-term economic plan. And I have no doubt that this will all be of great interest to the Indian government and the PM,” she said.
Stressing her government’s commitment to “stand shoulder to shoulder” with Modi, Patel said there was an opportunity to collaborate more in the field of innovation, R&D, new technologies, environmental and climate change issues. “He is a remarkable man and a visionary when it comes to India’s economic growth. We are seeing that clearly in Make in India, Skill India and the focus on young people and jobs and growth. It is similar to the economic approach that we have in this country, outlined by Cameron and Osborne,” she said. In reference to the personal connect between Modi and Cameron, she added, “David Cameron has invested a great deal in the UK-India relationship. I have been twice with the PM and he has been to India three times in the last Parliament.
He has a very warm relationship with the Indian PM. This visit will demonstrate the strength of that unbeatable combination of our two leaders”.