Honourable Mr Andrew Fleming, Acting Head of the British Deputy High Commission in Bengaluru visited the Centre for Public Policy Research (CPPR) in Kochi on 30th September 2022 for an interactive session with the CPPR team. The interaction was attended by Distinguished Fellows of CPPR such as Vice Admiral Muralidharan (Retd), K V Thomas, and Special Advisor Dr. Shakila Shamsu. The Chairman of CPPR, Dr Dhanuraj officially welcomed Mr Fleming and spoke about the relation that CPPR has with the British Missions in India and highlighted some of the collaborative projects supported by them. He also gave insights into India’s bilateral relationship with the UK.
In the interaction with the CPPR team, Mr. Andrew Fleming highlighted synergies in UK-India relations. Touching upon the sad demise of the Queen, he emphasised the importance of the queen for advancing gender parity and gender representation in the public domain in the UK.
With regards to India-UK relations, the focus areas were healthcare, education, sciences, technology and security. He mentioned the increase in government-to-government engagement between the two nations in the past years. It is expected that the India-UK FTA will become a reality in the years to come and the future for the bilateral relations between the two countries is looking bright given our forward-looking relationship in the India-UK roadmap.
In the interaction with the CPPR team, Mr. Fleming also said that the people-to-people contact enhances the ties between the UK and India. There are numerous scholarships accessible for Indians given by the British High Commission. He commented that Brexit is still a sore issue for the country and one of the top three issues that need to be addressed. He also said that many top universities in the UK intend to come to India and set up Faculties here. Currently, the research areas that are promoted are linked deeply to the 2030 roadmap for UK and India relationships. The best minds in both countries shall start writing and researching together only to be acknowledged widely.
Mr Fleming was accompanied by Mr Manjunath K S (Political Advisor), Mr Sijoy Thomas (Senior Inward Investment Advisor) and Ms Asha from the British Deputy High Commission in Bengaluru.