A new phase begins in India-UK defense relations

A new phase begins in India-UK defense relations

Source – The Hindu and PIB.

General Studies – International Relations, International Organizations, UK-India Defense CEO Roundtable, Asian Development Bank and WTO, ‘Generation UK-India Programme’ Defense and International Security Partnership’, Free Trade Agreement.

Why in the News ?

  • Recently, India’s Defense Minister Rajnath Singh and Britain’s Defense Minister Grant Shapps attended the UK-India Defense CEO Roundtable in London. Mr Singh said that India wants to develop a partnership with Britain for cooperation, co-creation and co-innovation, so that both the countries can do great things together. Welcoming investment and technology cooperation from the UK, the Defense Minister said that India is ready with skilled human resources, a strong foreign direct investment and business environment and a large market as India moves towards becoming a developed economy by 2047. Is. According to Britain’s Defense Minister Grant Shapps, the relations between the two countries go beyond normal trade relations and the two countries basically have a strategic partnership.

New chapter of India-UK relations begins :

  • Currently, having Rishi Sunak, a person of Indian origin, as the Prime Minister of Britain is a golden opportunity for India and Britain to work together on global issues and implement the Roadmap 2030 for bilateral relations.
  • A free trade agreement between India and the UK will lead to economic growth and development by increasing import and export flows, increasing investment flows (both outward and inward), increasing productivity through more efficient allocation of resources and greater openness to international competition. An increase in prosperity is expected.
  • Under a free trade agreement, two partner countries reduce the import duty on mutually traded products, which benefits both the countries. Since India has always seen Britain as a ‘gateway’ for trade with EU countries, the free trade agreement will be a win-win deal not only for Britain but also for India.
  • Britain started a strategic partnership with India in 2004. Under this strategic partnership, Britain is with India in counter-terrorism, nuclear activities and civil space programme. Now it depends on the new British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak how seriously he takes the new strategic partnership of mutual relations. If Britain’s new Prime Minister Rishi Sunak gives his approval to the trade agreement as well as the Migration and Mobility Partnership Agreement, then it will be easier for trained people from India to go to Britain and do jobs or business there.

Broad context of India-UK bilateral relations :

  • The historical relations between India and the United Kingdom have been a modern and strong partnership.
  • With the changing times, the multi-faceted bilateral relations between India and the UK have only deepened and strengthened with the strategic partnership signed in 2004.
  • ‘A joint annual summit and regular meetings envisage a new and dynamic partnership between the India and UK Foreign Ministers.
  • Defense, nuclear energy, science and technology, space, civilian security, counter-terrorism, economic relations, education and culture have been important areas of mutual cooperative relations between India and the UK.
  • The UK has always supported India’s proposal for permanent membership of the UNSC and has also been an important interlocutor for India in global contexts within the European Union (EU), G-8 and G-20 groups.

Latest developments in India – UK relations :

  • India and the UK are in talks to create a pioneering partnership to boost cooperation in critical strategic technologies. The proposed partnership is expected to focus on semiconductors, telecommunications, critical minerals and other technologies with strategic implications.
  • There is also a focus on connecting Indian companies with state-of-the-art research facilities based in the UK focusing on 5G technology and other critical technologies in the telecommunications sector.
  • There is an urgent need to pave the way for transfer of research talents between the two countries and to further intensify its mobility.
  • Under the agreement between India and Britain, it will remove the red tape coming in the way of major cooperation. It will launch new joint research plans aimed at delivering progress on some of the biggest issues facing the world, from climate change and pandemic preparedness to AI and machine learning.
  • The agreement aims to enable accelerated and deepened collaboration on science between the two countries, with the aim of helping economic growth, creating jobs for skilled workers and improving the quality of life of people in the UK and India, as well as around the world. Have to improve.

Political relations between India and Britain :

  • Britain (United Kingdom) has a High Commission in New Delhi and five Deputy High Commissions in Mumbai, Chennai, Bangalore, Hyderabad and Kolkata. India also has a High Commission in London and two Consulates in Birmingham and Edinburgh.
  • India and Britain have strong ties based on history and culture.
  • The Indian diaspora in Britain is one of the largest ethnic minority communities in the country, with approximately 1.5 million people of Indian origin in Britain according to the 2011 census, accounting for about 1.8 percent of the total population and contributing 6% to the country’s GDP. Are.
  • India and Britain are also members of the Asian Development Bank and the World Trade Organization.
  • Three Presidents of India have paid state visits to the United Kingdom, namely Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan in June 1963, Ramaswamy Venkataraman in October 1990, and Pratibha Patil in 2009 respectively.
  • Indian Prime Ministers, including Manmohan Singh and Narendra Modi, also visited Britain during his tenure as Prime Minister of India.
  • Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom also paid state visits to India in November 1963, April 1990 and October 1997.
  • There have been regular exchanges of visits at the Prime Ministerial level under the strategic partnership since 2004.

Economic relations between India and Britain :

  • Economic and trade matters are guided by the institutional dialogues of the India-UK Joint Economic and Trade Committee, the Economic and Financial Dialogue and the India-UK Financial Partnership.
  • Indian multinational companies have contributed greatly to Britain’s trade and economy. According to data received till 2019, Indian companies in Britain had produced more than 48 billion pounds.

Educational relations between India and Britain :

  • The Education and Research Initiative (UKIERI) was launched in 2005 by the United Kingdom and India with the aim of focusing on higher education and research, schools and professional and technical skills.
  • Joint Working Group on Education, Newton-Bhabha Fund and scholarship schemes are some of the other educational initiatives taken by both the countries to maintain bilateral relations.
  • The UK also supports the Skill India Mission launched by the Indian central government and has announced a new commitment of up to £12 million.
  • During the visit of the Prime Minister of India to the UK in November 2015, the following announcements related to education were made –
  • 2016 was declared as the UK-India Year of Education, Research and Innovation.
  • Virtual partnership was started at the school level to enable the youth so that people from one country can experience the school education system of the other country. Along with this, they can develop understanding among themselves about the culture, traditions and social and family systems of each other country.
  • The United Kingdom plans to send 25,000 UK students to India through the “Generation UK-India Programme” by 2020, including 1000 UK interns with Tata Consultancy Services in India by 2020.
  • The third phase of the UK India Education and Research Initiative has also been launched.

Cultural relations between India and the United Kingdom :

  • India and Britain signed a Memorandum of Understanding on Cultural Cooperation in July 2010.
  • The Nehru Center (TNC), established in 1992 in London, is the cultural complex of the High Commission of India in the UK. It organizes a wide range of cultural programs on its premises.
  • Midnight Freedom Run was organized by the Indian High Commission in London on the midnight of 14–15 August, 2017 to commemorate 70 years of India’s independence.

India – UK defense relations :

  • Cooperation in the defense sector is another important pillar of bilateral cooperation. During the Prime Minister’s visit to the UK in November 2015, both countries agreed to further deepen their defense ties by establishing capability partnerships in strategic areas.
  • At the tri-service level, joint exercises and extensive exchanges between the three services are regularly conducted by both India and the UK.
  • India is a major strategic partner for the United Kingdom in the Indo-Pacific region, both in terms of market share and defense, as evidenced by the signing of the ‘Defence and International Security Partnership’ between India and the United Kingdom in 2015. Also underlined. Is.
  • For the UK, the successful conclusion of an FTA with India will boost its ambitions of a ‘Global Britain’ as the UK needs and wishes to expand its markets beyond Europe post-Brexit.
  • The UK is seeking to take advantage of opportunities in the developing economies of the Indo-Pacific region to strengthen its place on the global stage as an important global actor.
  • for India. The United Kingdom is a regional power in the Indian Pacific Ocean region as it has naval facilities in Oman, Singapore, Bahrain, Kenya and the British Indian Ocean Territory.
  • The United Kingdom has also confirmed US$70 million from the British International Investment Fund to support the use of renewable energy in India, which will help build renewable energy infrastructure and develop solar power in the region.
  • India has also sought easier market access for fisheries, pharma and agricultural products as well as duty concessions for labour-intensive exports.

Current major bilateral issues between India and Britain :

Extradition of Indian economic offenders :

  • The most important issue is the issue of extradition by the UK of Indian economic offenders who are currently under asylum in the UK and are using the foreign legal system to their advantage. Vijay Mallya, Nirav Modi and other criminals have long sought refuge in the British legal system, despite Indian economic crime cases being registered against them, which involve extradition.

Non-acceptance of White – British citizens :

  • White Britain’s rejection of India’s growth as a global power, especially through the media, is another cause of concern for India.
  • Under the leadership of the present Prime Minister, India has overtaken Britain as the fifth largest economy in terms of GDP and is continuously growing.
  • There is no difference between a modern and self-confident India and a British colonial India on the basis of race or the imperial legacy of the British Empire.

Major differences between the Indian parliamentary system and the British parliamentary system :

  • In Britain the head of state (King or Queen) is a hereditary position, whereas in India the head of state (President) is elected. In place of the British monarchical system, there is a republican system in India.
  • The British system is based on the principle of sovereignty of Parliament, whereas in India the Parliament is not supreme and exercises limited and restricted powers due to the written constitution, federal system, judicial review and fundamental rights.
  • In India, the Prime Minister can be a member of either of the two houses of the Parliament. Whereas in Britain, the Prime Minister must be a member of the lower house of Parliament (House of Commons).
  • In India, even a person who is not a member of Parliament can be appointed as a minister for a maximum period of six months, whereas in Britain, only members of Parliament are appointed as ministers.
  • There is a system of legal responsibility of the minister in Britain, whereas there is no such system in India. Unlike Britain, ministers in India are not required to countersign official acts of the head of state.
  • The ‘Shadow Cabinet’ is a unique institution of the British cabinet system. It is formed by the opposition party to balance the ruling cabinet and prepare its members for future ministerial office. There is no such institution in India.
  • The parliamentary system of government in India is largely based on the British parliamentary system, but it has never been a replica of the British system.

Conclusion/ Way forward :

  • The deep ties of culture, history and language already provide the UK with a potentially strong base from which to deepen ties with India.
  • Faced with entirely new circumstances, India and Britain must understand that both need each other to achieve their larger goals.
  • The thinking of both the countries on many other issues like dealing with terrorism in the changing global scenario, increasing cooperation in the Indo-Pacific region, supporting India’s candidature in the United Nations Security Council, environment, joint production of defense equipment and modern weapons and the situation in Afghanistan. Is the same. Both the countries have shared their views on these issues through many global forums. If both the countries join hands on a free trade agreement, then the economic partnership of both the countries will reach new heights. This will increase bilateral trade and provide employment to people on a large scale. Britain’s coming together with India on the Free Trade Agreement raises hopes because today India has become the largest market in the world. The Indian economy is booming all over the world. As of today, India has overtaken Britain and achieved the title of the country with the fifth largest economy in the world. Economic experts believe that by the year 2030, India can become the country with the third largest economy in the world. According to another report, India will overtake Germany in 2027 and Japan in 2030 in the size of the economy. Perhaps this is the reason why Britain is very serious about the trade deal with India.
  • As far as bilateral trade is concerned, Britain is India’s second largest trading partner in the world. It is noteworthy that the bilateral trade between the two countries, which was 16.7 billion dollars in 2018-19 and 15.5 billion dollars in 2019-20, has now increased to 40 billion dollars i.e. Rs 4 lakh crore. This has provided employment to more than 5 lakh people from both the countries. If we look closely, there are more than 800 Indian companies in Britain, which are making their presence felt in the IT sector. In this context, Tata has achieved the status of the largest Indian company providing jobs in England. The total investment of Indian companies abroad has crossed US$ 85 million. On the other hand, a lot of outsourcing work is also coming from Britain to India’s BPO sector. Outsourcing is beneficial for both countries. On one hand it reduces the costs of British companies, while on the other hand it provides employment opportunities to millions of educated Indians.
  • There is a large number of non-resident Indians present in Britain. This number has reached almost 2 million. Like other countries of the world, Indian people are also giving great impetus to Britain’s economic and political system. So in the last two decades, both the countries have taken many initiatives to increase economic cooperation. As a result, India has emerged as the second largest investor country in terms of number of projects in Britain. On the other hand, Britain is also leading among the countries investing total capital in India. If we look at import-export, India mainly exports finished goods and agricultural and related products to Britain. Apart from this, it also exports other goods like ready-made garments, engineering goods, leather garments and goods, chemicals, gold jewelry, footwear, marine products, rice, sports goods, tea, granite, jute, medicines etc. .
  • India mainly imports capital goods, export goods, finished goods, raw materials and other related goods from England/UK. Both the countries are working together to eradicate global poverty, reform global organizations and eliminate terrorism. Pakistan is on Britain’s target for promoting terrorism in India. India’s air strike on Pakistan has been supported by Britain. The best part is that both countries have also agreed on reforms in the UN Security Council to more effectively reflect the realities of the 21st century.

Practice Questions for Preliminary Exam :

Q.1. Consider the following statements regarding India-Britain relations.

  1. Britain has been an important interlocutor for India in global contexts within the European Union (EU), G-8 and G-20 groups.
  2. There are about 1.5 million people of Indian origin in Britain, which is about 1.8 percent of the total population and contribute 6% to the country’s GDP.
  3. India and Britain are also members of the Asian Development Bank and the World Trade Organization.
  4. The Nehru Center (TNC), established in 1992 in London, is the cultural complex of the High Commission of India in the UK.

Which of the above statement /statements is correct?

(A) Only 1, 2 and 3.

(B) Only 2, 3 and 4

(C)  None of these.

 (D)  All of these  

Answer – (D)

Practice Questions for Main Exam :

Q.1. Explain the various aspects of India-UK relations by discussing in detail the various dimensions of the India-UK Free Trade Agreement.


No Comments

Post A Comment