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Panel discussion on 'UK, EU and India relations in the context of Brexit

Panel discussion on ‘UK, EU and India relations in the context of Brexit’
Kings College, London April 23, 2018

High Commissioner of India to the UK, Mr. Y.K. Sinha delivered the keynote address during a panel discussion on UK, EU and India relations in the context of Brexit organised by King’s College, London as part of a two-day conference on Global India. Professor Edward Byrne AC, President and Principal, King’s College London welcomed the High Commissioner during a reception hosted in his honour at the College.

The panelists included Professor Anand Menon, Director of the UK in a Changing Europe in King’s College, London, Professor Uttara Sahasrabuddhe, Professor of International Relations, University of Mumbai, Professor Jan Wouters, Director, Leuven Centre for Global Governance Studies, University of Leuven and moderated by Professor Harsh V Pant, International Relations, King’s College London.

In his address, High Commissioner gave a historical context of India’s relationship with the UK and how this relationship has evolved in the seven decades post independence as India has assumed a larger role in various fields. He spoke of the many accomplishments of India in the economic, scientific, technological and political spheres and said that India is now recognized as a global player, and is being actively wooed as a partner across the globe.

High Commissioner said that the cooperation between India and the UK in the areas of trade and investment, innovation and technology, defence, security, counter-terrorism, policy planning and strategy, cyber security, research & development is expected to further increase in the years to come due to a strong commitment on both sides to further enhance the strategic partnership between the two countries. He said that the just concluded visit of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi to the UK underlined the importance that India attaches to its special relationship with the UK and its role in a rejuvenated Commonwealth. During this visit, both countries announced the signing of 10 MoUs and agreements spanning initiatives across technology, cyber security and Ayurveda, tackling serious and organized crime, trade and investment, skills and vocational education, dairying and animal husbandry, Ganga rejuvenation and safe usage of nuclear energy.

Regarding the post-Brexit scenario, High Commissioner said that India has also committed to transition EU-India third country agreements to ensure continued application to the UK of EU-India Agreements during the implementation period following the UK’s departure from the EU. He reiterated that while the consequences of Brexit on the United Kingdom, European Union and their relationship with India will depend on the outcome of Brexit negotiations, he was optimistic about the prospects of India’s relationship with both the UK and EU.