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PM Modi, Rishi Sunak agree on early FTA, safety for Indian mission

Modi and Sunak discuss India-UK Roadmap 2030 (Photo: ANI)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi held a telephonic conversation with his UK counterpart Rishi Sunak in which they reviewed the progress on a number of bilateral issues as part of the India-UK Roadmap 2030 and agreed on the need for early conclusion of a mutually beneficial Free Trade Agreement between the two countries.

The two leaders expressed satisfaction at the recent high-level exchanges and growing cooperation, particularly in trade and economic sectors. PM Modi raised the issue of the security of Indian diplomatic establishments in the UK and called for strong action against anti-India elements by the UK Government.

Also read: PM Modi meets UK’s Rishi Sunak, other G20 heads in Bali

PM Rishi Sunak conveyed that the UK considers the attack on Indian High Commission totally unacceptable and assured of the security of the Indian Mission and its personnel.

PM Modi also raised the issue of economic offenders who have sought refuge in the UK. He sought progress on the return of these fugitives so that they can appear before the Indian judicial system, a PMO release said.

PM Modi invited PM Sunak for the G20 Summit to be held in September 2023. The UK Prime Minister appreciated the progress made under India’s Presidency of the G20 and reiterated the UK’s full support to India’s initiatives and their success.

PM conveyed greetings to PM Sunak and the Indian community in the UK on the eve of Baisakhi. The two leaders agreed to remain in contact.

“Pleased to speak with UK PM Rishi Sunak. Extended Baisakhi greetings to him, and new year greetings to the vibrant Indian community in the UK. We reviewed progress on a number of issues to further strengthen India-UK Comprehensive Strategic Partnership, including FTA,” PM Modi said in a tweet.

“We also agreed on the need to take strong action against anti-India elements and to ensure the security of Indian diplomatic establishments in the UK. We also discussed the issue of economic offenders,” he added.

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had spoken on Free Trade Agreements during her visit to Washington and said that FTAs are being signed in a much “faster” way nowadays.

She said that India-UK Free Trade Agreement (FTA) negotiations are “going on as we speak.”

Speaking with ANI, British Deputy High Commissioner Christina Scott had said that negotiations on the Free Trade Agreement between India and the United Kingdom are continuing and both countries are “determined” to work together.

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