Britain’s pledge for stronger economic ties with India could not have come at a more appropriate time as the South Asian economic power opens its various economic sectors for greater foreign investment and participation.
British Prime Minister David Cameron, on an official tour to India, has pledged to work with Indian government in creating a $25 billion (Dh91 billion) industrial corridor between India’s commercial capital Mumbai and its information technology hub, Bengaluru.
Cameron’s latest move to strengthen economic ties with its former colony is expected to give British companies the early-mover advantage in investment-hungry India, where opportunities are aplenty.
India needs investment that will help empower the majority of its 1.2 billion people, many of whom live in poverty. If things work out as planned, the industrial corridor will help develop new industrial belts and urban centres that will create jobs and lift millions from poverty.
The new partnership will also help struggling British companies grow in a new market and strengthen their revenues and help the British economy. In short, this will create a win-win situation for both the UK and India.
For years, western countries have used India as an outsourcing hub for the information technology sector and a supplier of skilled human resources. The time has come to change that view. However, India needs to liberalise its economy further and reduce red tape to help fast-track projects.
On that note, India could also forge similar partnerships with other industrialised powers, namely Germany, France, the United States, China and Japan.