London: British Prime Minister Theresa May’s first bilateral visit outside Europe could be to India. She is aiming to be in Delhi during the India-UK Tech Summit scheduled to take place November 7-9.
While a senior official of the Indian High Commision, when asked, said “nothing is confirmed”, it didn’t go unnoticed that a conspicuous attendee at High Commissioner Navtej Sarna’s farewell party on Thursday evening was Jo Johnson, Minister for Universities, Science, Research and Innovation in the British government. Johnson is directly involved with Britain’s association with the Summit.
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A reliable source told Raymedia May’s visit, while not confirmed, was “likely”.
May met Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the G20 Summit in China last month. She is keen to sign a trade agreement with India to substitute for a forthcoming exit from the European Union (EU).
An Indian diplomat said an agreement in areas of mutual interest was possible, but that this can at best be drafted after Britain leaves the EU, which may not take place until the spring of 2019. Under EU laws, the UK cannot sign a trade treaty with any country until after formally exiting from the EU.