UK finance minister, Bank of England Guv to land in India for post-Brexit trade deals

United Kingdom (UK) Finance Minister Philip Hammond will lead a “heavyweight” trade mission to India next week with the message of ‘Make in India, Finance in UK’ in an effort to develop international trade post-Brexit.

UK Chancellor of the Exchequer Phillip Hammond (L).
UK Chancellor of the Exchequer Phillip Hammond (L). Photo Courtesy: Chatham House

Chancellor of the Exchequer Hammond will visit Delhi and Mumbai along with Governor of the Bank of England Mark Carney and UK government ministers, including Commercial Secretary Baroness Neville-Rolfe and International Trade minister Mark Garnier, the UK government said.

The delegation is a part of the annual UK-India Economic and Financial Dialogue and includes some of the UK’s most experienced leaders in financial services and leading FinTech entrepreneurs.

The UK has started looking to establish new trade deals with non-EU nations as part of British Prime Minister Theresa may’s post-Brexit plan for massive trade blitz.

“I’m delighted to be leading such a heavyweight delegation to India to bang the drum for British business. I am determined to create a truly Global Britain, reaching out and promoting the best of what we have to offer,” Hammond said in a statement.

“The UK is perfectly placed to be India’s financial partner of choice, helping it to raise the finance needed for its continued rapid growth and my message will be ‘Make in India, Finance in the UK’. Our innovative markets have helped support the development of whole new product classes such as masala bonds that will support India’s transformation,” he noted.

“As we leave the EU and embark on an exciting new phase of our economic history, looking to boost our trade and investment beyond the borders of Europe and strengthening our relationships with the world’s most vibrant economies is more important than ever,” the Conservative party minister added.

During the visit, Hammond is set to focus on “Prime Minister Modi’s ‘Make in India’ vision, which is devised to transform the country into a global manufacturing hub”.

India’s ambitious growth aspirations require it to develop its financial infrastructure and tap into global investors, with estimates suggesting that it needs over USD 1.5 trillion of capital in infrastructure investment alone in the coming years, said the statement from Hammond’s No 11 Downing Street office.

Hammond will also recognise the major opportunities for collaboration for British FinTech firms, specifically as India continues its drive towards a society “less dependent on cash, using technology to increase access to banking and finance for everyone”.

This ongoing push across India means that its “finance sector is undergoing a significant transformation, with new payment firms, small finance banks and insurance players entering the field,” the Treasury statement said.

“This shift presents enormous opportunities for the UK to work much more closely with India’s own exciting Fintech sector.”

International Trade Secretary Liam Fox will tour Manila, Kuala Lumpur, Jakarta, Dubai and Oman.

He said: “It’s nine months since we voted to leave the EU, and the signs are all positive. The economy is strong, as is inward investment, employment and consumer spending.”