• Mon. May 27th, 2024

UK Trade Minister visits Kolkata to grow green trade

UK’s Minister for International Trade, Nigel Huddleston will today [3 July] kick off a three-day visit to Kolkata and Dhaka focused on unlocking more opportunities for British companies to grow trade and win business.

Bilateral trade with India has already topped £36 billion, supporting half a million jobs across both countries. As part of its ambition to double bilateral trade by 2030, the UK is continuing to negotiate a trade deal with India.

Minister for International Trade, Nigel Huddleston said:

The UK has a strong and enduring relationship with India and Bangladesh. Our trade with both has grown significantly over the past year, which shows our partnerships are reaching new heights.

“I want to use my first official visit here to show the UK’s eagerness to work with both countries on shared challenges like climate change, using our collective expertise to deepen our trading relationship, spark economic growth, and create jobs.”

India has set strong targets to boost electric vehicles (EVs) and the UK is well-placed to support this ambition by providing knowledge exchange, access to finance and technology. The Minister will announce a new project that will see the UK and Government of West Bengal join forces on a pilot to develop electric two-wheelers, such as motorcycles or scooters.

British Deputy High Commissioner to Kolkata, Nick Low said: 

I’m delighted to welcome Nigel Huddleston, Minister of State for International Trade at the Department for Business and Trade, to Kolkata. Our Prime Ministers committed to double trade and investment and to safeguard our planet by building a sustainable future together in the 2030 Roadmap for India-UK Future Relations. My mission is to make that happen in Kolkata and across West Bengal.”

Huddleston will also launch a centre to enhance opportunities in the EV sector by partnering Indian businesses with elite academic and industrial institutions in the UK.

West Bengal – the sixth largest state by economic value in India, with a GDP expected to reach £117 million this year – has set a target of developing 1 million electric vehicles in the next five years.

Alongside this, he will also facilitate the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) and Government of West Bengal on skill development in sustainable and modern methods of construction. Through these three initiatives, UK businesses will be well-placed to customise and market EV technology and sustainable construction for this burgeoning market in India.

Minister Huddleston will also visit a waste processing company in Kolkata using cutting-edge green technologies supplied by UK business CDE Ireland to recycle construction waste into high quality, reusable sand.

At a business roundtable, the Minister will speak to industry leaders on the deepening of the UK and India’s economic ties – emphasising the opportunities that have already been unlocked from the UK-India Enhanced Trade Partnership. The Minister will also discuss the economic benefits of a UK-India trade deal, currently being negotiated, that could cut red tape, reduce tariffs, and help UK and Indian companies do business.

Source: British Deputy High Commission, Kolkata 

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