24-Apr-2018

India wants UK to accept more migrants before accepting any Brexit trade deal

LONDON April 9: India is no rush to do a post-Brexit trade deal with Britain and will demand easier access for Indians to migrate to Britain as part of a future trade relationship, the country's high commissioner has said.
 
Many Brexiteers, including Trade Secretary Liam Fox, argue leaving the European Union will allow Britain to sign prosperous new trade deals with global economic powerhouses, including India, the USA and China.
 
Speaking to Politico, Yashvardhan Sinha, the Indian High Commission in London, said India would like to the "best deal possible" with Britain, however, it is not a priority for its prime minister, Narendra Modi.
 
"I don’t think India is in a rush. I think India would like certainly, and I’m sure the U.K. would too … to get the best deal possible," Sinha said.
 
Sinha also reiterated previous warnings that India will want a trade deal with post-Brexit Britain to make it easier for Indian nationals to travel to and work the UK.
 
"I think for us it is very important that if we need to step up our engagement we need to have that easier access, the ease of travel has to be looked into," he said.
 
In November, Sinha told The Telegraph that Britain must be prepared to accept more Indian migrants as a price of any free trade deal agreed between London and New Delhi.
 
"You’ve all read about issues of freer mobility of professions. That is something right up there as far as India is concerned," he said.
 
"I’m not talking about unfettered access or unrestricted travel, I’m talking about movement of professionals, movement of doctors, technicians, engineers. I think both sides will benefit from this exchange."