Home Secretary Suella Braverman said the UK was “desired” to strike a trade deal with India to boost both economies and that Brexit meant Britain no longer had a European mindset towards trade. trade or visas, days after she caused a stir with her “concern” about what she fears could be an “open borders” approach in the ongoing trade negotiations with India.
Speaking at the Diwali event hosted here by the UK-based India Global Forum (IGF) on Tuesday evening, the Indian-born Cabinet Minister spoke about being a proud member of British Indian community and celebrates the contribution of the Indian community to British life.
In an apparent attempt to deny her recent controversial remarks about Indians forming the largest group of visa overstayers, the minister said villages, towns and cities of the United Kingdom were “profoundly enriched by immigration from India”.
“Of course, there is an economic imperative for our countries to work together, which is why we are so eager to reach a trade deal,” said Suella Braverman.
“But the boost to our economy is not the only virtue in making our friendship even stronger. We have a common vision that by 2030 we will an even stronger partnership… As Home Secretary, I attach great importance to cooperation on security matters between our two countries. , at a domestic level in India and in the UK but also more broadly internationally, particularly in the Indo-Pacific,” she said.
With Diwali no longer a target date for a draft free trade agreement (FTA), Suella Braverman sought to reiterate that the Liz Truss-led government remains determined to build on Prime Minister Narendra’s momentum. Modi and former British Prime Minister Boris Johnson.
“In fact, leaving the European Union (EU) means that the UK is in a better position to think outside the European way, to look to all horizons and to cherish and nurture relationships with old friends like India The points-based immigration system means we don’t. She prioritizes people from Europe over people from elsewhere. Meanwhile, about a quarter of all students. expats in the UK are coming from India,” she noted.
Dressed in lehenga for Diwali celebrations attended by other senior MPs, business leaders and diplomats, the 42-year-old minister also reflected on her very own relationship with India and said about being impressed by how “fresh and vibrant” India- The UK always feels when she travels “from Kerala to Bihar, from Delhi to Calcutta”.
“India is in my heart, she is in my soul, she is in my blood. I am very proud that my father has his family roots and hometown in Goa and my mother can be traced her ancestry to Madras,” she said.
“India is part of my own heritage, I’m Indian on both sides of my family. My mother came here from Mauritius and my father came here from Kenya. They feel a deep connection and love. with England even before they came here. It is a love that I share. And, I have never seen any contradiction in it, because no contradiction exists,” she said. more.
UK-born Member of Parliament Fareham in the south of England also mentioned her upbringing in Wembley’s north-west London Indian community center, “the home of the Asian community.” here” in her Diwali message.
The minister said she wanted Britons to be able to “enjoy Indian culture deeply”, through visiting, studying and working in India and by engaging in the UK, where entry must be based on “achievement, not ability. pay the smugglers, the deadly evil dealers that we must smash”.
She stated: “We devour food, music, movies and art from each other’s countries. The story of India and the story of the UK are so closely linked that they are. like a story”.
Britain and India kicked off Free Trade Agreement negotiations on January 13.
India’s exports to the UK hit $10.5 billion in 2021-22, while imports hit $7 billion.
India’s main exports to the UK include clothing and ready-made textiles, gems and jewelry, engineering goods, petroleum products, transport equipment, spices, pharmaceuticals and marine .
Imports from the UK include precious and semi-precious stones, metal ores and scrap, engineering goods, chemicals and machinery.
In the services sector, the UK is the largest market in Europe for Indian IT services.
(Except for the title, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from an aggregated feed.)