From spinning charkha at Sabarmati Ashram in Ahmedabad to jumping on a bulldozer at the JCB plant in Halol, Prime Minister Boris Johnson is being warmly received during his two-day visit to India.
The British Prime Minister landed in Ahmedabad yesterday (Thursday) to a grand welcome from Gujarat Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel, Governor Acharya Devvrat, dancers, drummers and crowds cheering and waving British flags at the Ahmedabad airport.
Mr Johnson, who is on his maiden visit to Gujarat, visited the Sabarmati Ashram before heading to the manufacturing facility of JCB, a British construction equipment firm, near Halol in Panchmahal district.
The Prime Minister is in India to hold in-depth talks on the UK and India’s strategic defence, diplomatic and economic partnership, aimed at bolstering close partnership and stepping up security cooperation in the Indo-Pacific. During his India visit, PM Johnson is also announcing new deals worth £1 billion.
As he visits New Delhi today [Friday], the Prime Minister is meeting President Modi and will reiterate the vital importance of the UK-India partnership for global peace and security.
He is expected to discuss next-generation defence and security collaboration across the five domains – land, sea, air, space and cyber – in meetings with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, as our nations face complex new threats.
This includes support for new Indian-designed and built fighter jets, offering the best of British know-how on building battle-winning aircraft. The UK will also seek to support India’s requirements for new technology to identify and respond to threats in the Indian Ocean.
To support greater defence and security collaboration with India over the coming decade, the UK will issue an Open General Export Licence (OGEL) to India, reducing bureaucracy and shortening delivery times for defence procurement. This is our first OGEL in the Indo-Pacific region.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson said:
The world faces growing threats from autocratic states which seek to undermine democracy, choke off free and fair trade and trample on sovereignty.
The UK’s partnership with India is a beacon in these stormy seas. Our collaboration on the issues that matter to both our countries, from climate change to energy security and defence, is of vital importance as we look to the future.
I look forward to discussing these issues with Prime Minister Modi in New Delhi today and working together to deliver a more secure and prosperous future for both our peoples.
The Prime Minister will also discuss new cooperation on clean and renewable energy in his meetings in New Delhi today, aimed at supporting India’s energy transition away from imported oil and increasing its resilience through secure and sustainable energy, and addressing climate change in both the UK and India.
The UK and India are launching a virtual Hydrogen Science and Innovation hub to accelerate affordable green hydrogen, as well as new funding for the Green Grids Initiative announced at COP26, and collaboration on joint work on the electrification of public transport across India.
As well as boosting our domestic energy and economic resilience, the UK and India are collaborating as a force for good globally. Our governments are committing up to £75 million to roll out adaptable clean tech innovations from India to the wider Indo-Pacific and Africa, and working together on international development and girls education.
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