UK-INDIA JOINT STATEMENT: SHARED VALUES, GLOBAL CAPABILITY
The Voice of Chandigarh News
The UK and India have agreed the following Joint Statement as part of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the UK as an Official Guest of Government.
At the invitation of Prime Minister Theresa May, the Prime Minister of India, Mr Narendra Modi visited the United Kingdom (UK) as a Guest of Government on 18 April 2018. The two leaders held wide-ranging and constructive discussions and underlined our strategic partnership and growing convergence on regional and international issues. Prime Minister Modi will also participate in the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in London from 19-20 April 2018.
The UK and India have a natural ambition to reinforce our Strategic Partnership, based on shared values, common law and institutions, as the world’s oldest and largest democracies. We are committed members of the Commonwealth. We share a global outlook and commitment to a rules-based international system that strongly opposes unilateral actions that seek to undermine that system through force or coercion. We share the Living Bridge of countless personal and professional ties between our nations.
The UK and India will work closely together and with other Commonwealth member-states, the Commonwealth Secretariat and other partner organisations to address shared and global challenges. We are committed to reinvigorating the Commonwealth, especially ensuring its relevance to small and vulnerable states and to our youth, who make up 60% of the Commonwealth’s population. The Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting is an important opportunity to address these challenges as we come together and unite under the summit’s official theme “Towards a Common Future”. Specifically, the United Kingdom and India will make commitments to help create a more sustainable, prosperous, secure and fairer future for all Commonwealth citizens by taking action:
- To promote coordinated global action to tackle plastic pollution including through the Commonwealth and India’s role as host of World Environment Day 2018.
- To provide practical support to help Commonwealth member-states boost cyber security capacity;
- To help Commonwealth member-states implement the World Trade Organisation (WTO) Trade Facilitation Agreement by providing technical assistance and increased support for the Commonwealth Small States’ offices.
A UK-India Technology Partnership is central to our joint vision and to our prosperity, today and for our next generations. Our nations are at the forefront of a technology revolution. We will share knowledge, collaborate on research, innovate and create partnerships between our world-class innovation clusters. We will deploy our complementary technological strengths to create high value jobs, enhance productivity, promote trade and investment and tackle shared challenges.
Both sides will scale up collaboration on Future Tech to tackle our global challenges; realising the potential of Artificial Intelligence (AI); the digital economy; health technologies; cyber security; and promoting clean growth, smart urbanisation and future mobility – while developing the future skills and capabilities of our youth.
The Government of India welcomes the UK initiative of establishing a UK-India Tech Hub in India as part of our growing bilateral Technology Partnership. The Tech Hub will bring together hi-tech companies to create investment and export opportunities and provide a new platform to share the very best technologies and advance policy collaboration including on Future Mobility, Advanced Manufacturing and Healthcare AI under India’s Aspirational districts’ Programme. We will establish a series of new partnerships between UK regional and Indian State-level tech clusters, to drive joint innovation and R&D. With the support of both Governments we have also announced an India-UK Tech CEO Alliance; signed a Tech UK/NASSCOM MoU focused on skills and new technologies, including industry-led apprenticeship schemes; and launched the new UK Fintech Rocketship Awards to boost fintech and wider entrepreneurship in India.
Both sides are deploying the best of British and Indian talent in science, research and technology to address priority global challenges. The UK is India’s second largest international research and innovation partner. The UK-India Newton-Bhabha programme will have lifted joint research and innovation awards to over £400 million by 2021, since 2008. We will also deepen our joint working relationship on health to make the UK and India safer and healthier places to live, including through scaling up and rolling out AI and digital health technologies.
Trade, Investment and Finance
The leaders agreed to forge a dynamic new India-UK Trade Partnership, to develop new trading arrangements as the UK assumes responsibility for its independent trade policy, facilitate investment in both directions and intensify collaboration on shared or complementary strengths. Building on the recommendations of the recently-completed UK-India Joint Trade Review, we will work together on a sector-based roadmap, to reduce barriers to trade, make it easier to do business in both countries and enable a stronger bilateral trade relationship after the UK exits the EU. We will also ensure continued application to the UK of EU-India Agreements during the Implementation Period following the UK’s departure from the EU, and put in place arrangements to replicate relevant EU-India agreements beyond this period.
The leaders reaffirmed the crucial role of the rules-based multilateral trading system, and the importance of enhancing free, fair, and open trade for achieving sustainable growth and development. They reaffirmed their commitment to work together with all members of the WTO and to take forward a dialogue under the Joint Working Group on Trade which will support a shared commitment to the global rules-based system and to the WTO’s role in underpinning it.
The UK has been the largest G20 investor in India over the last ten years and India has the fourth largest number of investment projects in the UK. We will begin a new dialogue on investment to improve our mutual understanding of priorities and review future opportunities for cooperation.
India welcomed the decision by the UK to provide additional support to Indian businesses by establishing a reciprocal Fast Track Mechanism for Indian investments into the UK. A programme of technical cooperation will help in improving the regulatory environment. The two sides will support initiatives of the business stakeholders, including those proposed by the UK-India CEO Forum which met today, to achieve shared prosperity for India and the UK.
Both sides welcomed the prominent role played by the City of London in global finance and investment. About 75% of the global value in rupee-denominated “masala bonds” issued on the London Stock Exchange with a third of these being green bonds.
The Green Growth Equity Fund (GGEF), a joint initiative by the Governments of India and the UK under India’s flagship National Investment and Infrastructure Fund, will provide financing to the fast-growing Indian renewable energy sector. With a commitment of £120 million from each side, the
GGEF is expected to raise up to £500 million from institutional investors. GGEF will help accelerate achieving
India’s target of 175GW of renewable energy capacity by 2022 and also invest in other related sectors such as clean transportation, water and waste management. We look forward to future cooperation on energy and infrastructure policy and have agreed to work together on smart urbanisation.
We also welcomed the establishment of a FinTech dialogue between our two countries – including the proposed new regulatory cooperation agreement. Our financial services collaboration will be enhanced by a programme of technical cooperation to help develop markets in insolvency, pensions and insurance. Further collaboration in these areas will be set out by Finance Ministers when they meet for the tenth round of the Economic and Financial Dialogue later this year.
India and the UK acknowledged the importance of connectivity in today’s globalised world. They underlined that connectivity initiatives must be based on the key principles of good governance, rule of law, openness and transparency; should follow social and environmental standards, principles of financial responsibility, accountable debt-financing practices; and must be pursued in a manner that respects international obligations, standards, best practice and delivers tangible benefits.
Responsible Global Leadership
The leaders reaffirmed their commitment to lead the fight against climate change. Both sides noted that addressing climate change and promoting secure, affordable and sustainable supplies of energy are key shared priorities, and agreed to cooperate on reducing the cost of development and deployment of clean energy projects through technology innovation, knowledge sharing, capacity building, trade and investment, and project establishment.
The United Kingdom welcomed the pro-active steps taken by India in establishing the International Solar Alliance (ISA). The leaders noted the successful holding of the joint event between the ISA and London Stock Exchange (LSE) with support from the two governments as part of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting week. The event marked the UK joining the Alliance, highlighted the proposed collaboration between the UK and ISA on solar financing, developing next generation solar technologies, and demonstrating UK solar business’s expertise to support the delivery of ISA’s objectives. The event also highlighted the role of the LSE as a financial organisation that can play a key role in furthering ISA’s objectives towards mobilisation of investment of over US$1,000 billion into solar energy by 2030 in target ISA countries.
As thriving democracies, we share a desire to work closely together and with all who share our objective to support a rules-based international order that upholds agreed international norms, global peace and stability. Together the UK and India are a force for good in an uncertain world. We are sharing our experience and knowledge to tackle global challenges.
India’s Department of Biotechnology (DBT) and Cancer Research UK propose to launch a £10 million bilateral research initiative which will focus on low cost approaches to cancer treatment. UK’s Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council and DBT will lead the “Farmer Zone” initiative, an open-source data platform for smart agriculture which will use biological research and data to improve the lives of small and marginal farmers anywhere in the world. DBT will also partner with UK’s Natural Environmental Research Council (NERC) on the Towards a Sustainable Earth initiative, which seeks to prioritise research and innovation for sustainable and resilient human development.
We will strengthen our partnership on global development, to accelerate progress to eradicate extreme poverty by 2030. We will ensure that the benefits of increased finance, new markets, trade, investment, connectivity and economic integration are shared by as many countries as possible – and by the poorest and most marginalised – to build a more prosperous and safer future.
Defence and Cyber Security
In 2015, we pledged a new Defence and International Security Partnership (DISP) to make security and defence a cornerstone of our relationship. The nature of threats that we face continues to change – so we must be innovative and agile in our response. We shall design, create and manufacture technologies that will address these threats; and our security and military forces will share technologies, capabilities and equipment.
A secure, free, open, inclusive and prosperous Indo-Pacific is in the interests of India, the UK and the international community. The UK and India will also work together to tackle threats such as piracy, protect freedom of navigation and open access, and improve maritime domain awareness in the region.
We have agreed to further enhance our cooperation to promote international security and stability in cyberspace through a framework that recognises the applicability of international law to State behaviour in a free, open, peaceful and secure cyberspace.
The two leaders reiterated their strong condemnation of terrorism in all its forms including terrorism and terror-related incidents in both India and the UK. Both leaders also affirmed that terrorism cannot be justified on any grounds whatsoever it may be and it should not be associated with any religion, creed, nationality and ethnicity.
The leaders agreed that terrorist and extremist organisations need to be denied space to radicalise, recruit and conduct attacks on innocent people; for this all countries need to work together to disrupt terrorist networks, their financing and movement of terrorists, including foreign terrorist fighters.
The leaders agreed to strengthen cooperation to take decisive and concerted actions against globally-proscribed terrorists and terror entities to protect our citizens, including Lashkar-e-Tayibba, Jaish-e-Mohammad, Hizb-ul-Mujahideen, Haqqani Network, Al Qaeda, ISIS (Da’esh) and their affiliates, as well as tackling the online radicalisation and violent extremism which feeds this.
In the wake of the appalling nerve agent attack in Salisbury, the UK and India have reiterated their shared interest in strengthening the disarmament and non-proliferation regimes against the spread and use of chemical weapons. They shared their deepest concern about the continued reports of the use of chemical weapons in the Syrian Arab Republic. They oppose the use of chemical weapons anywhere, at any time, by anybody, under any circumstances and are committed to strengthening the effective implementation of the Chemical Weapons Convention. They emphasise the need for urgent investigations and underline that the conduct of all investigations of any use of chemical weapons must be strictly in accordance with the provisions of the Convention.
Education and People-to-People
We welcome the best and brightest to study and work in the UK, especially in subjects and sectors that develop the skills and capabilities that will boost the prosperity of both our countries.
The two leaders lauded the successful completion of the India-UK Year of Culture in 2017. The year-long programme saw an unprecedented level of cultural exchange showcasing artistic, cultural and literary traditions in both countries and was a fitting celebration of the deep cultural ties that bind India and the UK.
The leaders welcomed the 70th anniversary of the British Council in India and its work to train teachers, deliver skills programmes for youth, and support cultural exchanges.
The two leaders agreed that it is the Living Bridge between the people of the two countries that gives the greatest optimism that the next generation of India and UK will have an even more robust and stronger engagement and exchange. The leaders agreed to encourage and support this Living Bridge.
We are committed to making this a strategic partnership, that spans the globe and the century, seeing our special relationship evolve and improve in the coming years. We encourage our business, cultural and intellectual leaders to exploit the millions of interactions that already link India and the UK, from family to finance, business to Bollywood, sport to science – so that millions more British and Indians exchange and learn, travel, trade and thrive together.
Prime Minister Modi thanked Prime Minister Theresa May and the Government of the United Kingdom for the warm hospitality extended to him and his delegation and looked forward to welcoming her in India.