India, Britain sign commercial deals worth $14 billion

London, Nov 13 (IANS) India and Britain signed commercial deals worth 9.2 billion pounds ($14 billion) on Thursday, following delegation level talks between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his British counterpart.

“Prime Ministers Cameron and Modi noted the deep and fruitful business relationship between the UK and India and welcomed the 9.2 billion pounds of commercial deals between the UK and India announced during the visit and listed in the annex,” a joint statement issued at the end of the delegation level talks stated.

“The UK has accounted for 8.56 percent of total foreign direct investment in India during the last 15 years. Indian companies employ 110,000 people in the UK,” it stated

According to the statement, Cameron noted the opening of the Indian market to greater foreign direct investment in the insurance sector.

“In order to extend insurance cover to India’s large population, the government has increased the FDI limit in insurance and pension sector to 49 percent,” the statement said.

“As a result, the UK’s insurance industry with joint ventures in India, have announced a number of agreements to increase their Foreign Direct Investment in the country. These agreements would amount to approximately $238 million of Foreign Direct Investment in the first instance subject to regulatory approvals. This will support the ongoing development of the Indian insurance and reinsurance sectors, which are key elements in promoting sustainable economic growth.”

“The two prime ministers welcomed HSBC’s “Skills for life” initiative in India, a 10 million pounds programme to skill 75,000 disadvantaged young people and children over five years,” it stated.

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