New Delhi [India], December 15 (ANI): United Kingdom Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab on Tuesday said that the UK and India are committed to building a stronger defence partnership between the two countries which would help to tackle shared issues like terrorism, maritime security and privacy.
"We want to deepen our economic partnership -- we already have a strong trade relationship. In the year before the pandemic hit, bilateral trade between India and UK grew at a vibrant 11 per cent. Now what we want to do is to take that to another level -- working towards a green and enhanced trade partnership," Raab said at a joint statement following the India-UK ministerial dialogue.
He added, "We are committed to building a stronger defence and security partnership with our Indian friends that will help us tackle shared issues of concerns whether it is terrorism, maritime security and including piracy in the Western Indian Ocean."
The UK Foreign Secretary said that the two countries "want to" work together in order to ensure secure telecom and 5G networks.
Speaking on the problem of Climate Change, Raab said that the UK recognises India's leadership in the area through the International Solar Alliance and the Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (CDRI).
"India has made real strides on renewable energy. We want to keep building on our partnership in this area," he said further.
The top UK diplomat further stated that the UK wanted to further deepen the partnership with the two countries in the field of education, research and innovation.
"A closer relationship with India and the Indo-Pacific region is really one the highest foreign policy priorities of the UK government," he added.
Raab said, "As we are coming to the end of the transition of the Brexit phase, I think you can expect the UK to be more active and energetic in particular the Indo-Pacific tilt. We spent our time talking about Covid and what we can do."
External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Tuesday said he and UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab had a four-hour-long discussion on a wide range of issues including on how to take India and UK ties at a higher level.
Speaking at the joint press briefing along with Raab after bilateral and delegation-level talks, Jaishankar said he and Raab believe that the interests of both the countries are better served by working together more effectively.
Raab, who arrived here on Monday, is on a four-day visit. The External Affairs Ministry said that Raab's visit will pave the way for further strengthening of the partnership across trade, defence, climate, migration and mobility, education, and health sectors in the post-Covid, post-Brexit context. (ANI)