New UK minister Alok Sharma leaves for talks in New Delhi

  • Prasun Sonwalkar, Hindustan Times, London
  • Updated: Jul 24, 2016 23:01 IST

Alok Sharma, Britain’s newly-appointed junior minister in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office responsible for Asia and the Pacific, left for New Delhi on Sunday for talks with Indian ministers and representatives of trade and industry.

Sharma said before leaving: “I am delighted that India will be my first official visit since taking up my appointment as a Foreign Office Minister. The UK and India have a broad and exciting partnership that includes trade and investment, climate and energy, education, health and culture, reinforced by the large, vibrant Indian diaspora in Britain.”

“Britain is open for business and thriving on the world stage. We want the strongest possible relationship with India and I want to continue our vital strategic partnership on this visit and in my new role,” he added.

Official sources said the agenda for the visit includes discussions on “smart cities” and a meeting with the next generation’s “opinion formers” on foreign policy at an “Emerging Voices” event.

Sharma, MP from Reading, will also visit Mumbai, the sources added.

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