Ahead of virtual summit with PM Narendra Modi, UK PM Boris Johnson announces 1 billion pounds trade deals including £240 investment by Serum Institute of India

New Delhi: Ahead of the virtual summit with Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday (May 4, 2021), British Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced one billion pounds of trade deals that include an investment of 240 million pounds by the Pune-based Serum Institute of India (SII). 

Boris Johnson said, “Like every aspect of the UK-India relationship, the economic links between our countries make our people stronger and safer.”

The investment by Serum Institute, according to the UK government, will be into their vaccine business and a new sales office that will generate new business worth one billion pounds. 

All in all, the announcement on a trade deal will create 6500 new jobs in the UK and includes over £533 million of new Indian investment. £200 million of these deals will support low carbon growth.

The virtual summit between Johnson and PM Modi is likely to be held around 5 PM on Tuesday. One of the key focus areas during the virtual meet will be the launching of the comprehensive Roadmap 2030. 

The roadmap aims to expand and deepen the India-UK cooperation in the next decade in five areas namely people-to-people relationship, trade, and prosperity, defence and security, climate action, and healthcare.

The UK sees New Delhi as its key partner in a post-Brexit world and has been increasing engagement as part of its Indo-Pacific tilt. 

This is to be noted that Johnson was also very keen on visiting India, twice in the last four months. But both the visits were cancelled due to the COVID-19 situation in India and the UK. 

Meanwhile, as the COVID-19 crisis in India leaves unimaginable devastation, London has been quick to send assistance. Last week, it had become the first country to send planeloads of assistance to New Delhi and has so far sent £6 million worth of medical supplies. 

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