UK minister in India to launch tech alliance

New Delhi, May 11 (UNI) The UK Secretary of State for Digital, Matt Hancock arrived here on a three-day visit to launch the UK-India Tech Partnership and confirm regional link-ups that are expected to pave the way for new deals, creating jobs and bringing in investment to both countries.

The partnership, announced during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to London last month, will pair businesses, universities and tech institutions in the two countries and develop a new UK-India Tech Hub in Delhi.

“The UK and India are global leaders in tech and by deepening our ties we can open up huge opportunities for business and citizens in both countries,” said Hancock.

“Our new UK-India Tech Partnership will not only lay the foundations for new investment, growth and jobs, but it will also boost collaboration on the technologies of the future that will improve and revolutionise our lives.”

The Tech Partnership will encourage innovation and productivity by helping businesses in the UK and India collaborate on emerging technologies, develop mentoring relationships and exchange staff.

The digital secretary will link the Midlands Engine with Maharashtra with a focus on future mobility including low emission and autonomous vehicles, battery storage and vehicle light weighting.

He will say the Northern Powerhouse will be linked to Karnataka with a focus on data, augmented and virtual reality, advanced materials and artificial intelligence.
Hancock will say, if successful, he expects the partnership to link other regions in the UK and India, according to a British High Commission release.

In Delhi, Hancock will address the National Association of Software and Services Companies, meet Indian firms, including Paytm, Quatrro and DevITPL, and confirm a new UK-India Tech Thought Leadership Summit will be held in India in the Autumn.
He will meet with UK and India investors to lay the foundations for new deals in areas such as fintech, cybersecurity, health-tech and smart cities.

“I will also launch the expanded Tech Rocketship awards, which help Indian tech start-ups establish their businesses in the UK, bringing fresh innovation to our country.”

In Mumbai, he will champion the UK’s artificial intelligence and fintech industries at an event hosted by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and Indian business leaders. This will build on recent agreements for the UK’s financial services industries to work closer together and build stronger economic links between London and Mumbai.

The UK-India Tech Hub provide access routes to markets for British and Indian entrepreneurs. It follows the success of the UK-Israel Tech Hub which has generated ?62 million worth of deals over the past five years, with a potential impact of ?600 million for the UK economy.

It comes as the UK and India’s tech trade associations TechUK and NASSCOM have announced they will work together through a new UK-India Tech Alliance, bringing senior tech leaders together to collaborate, help develop policy and encourage innovation.
The UK will initially invest ?1 million to pilot the approach and potentially up to a further ?13 million by 2022.

To build the network the government will engage in-country experts to work with the British High Commission in New Delhi, the Indian government and the private sector in order to increase tech investment, exports and research and development.

Smaller regional teams will link specific cities and regions in India and the UK.

The Tech Partnership will encourage innovation and productivity by helping businesses in the UK and India collaborate on emerging technologies, develop mentoring relationships and exchange staff.

The regional teams will also ensure the impact is felt across the breadth of both nations’ expansive tech sectors, and that successful approaches adopted in one region can be shared and adopted in others.

A recent report by Grant Thornton in association with CII showed the UK remains a highly attractive destination for Indian investors.

Investment by Indian companies in the UK has increased with capital expenditure rising from ?4.25 billion in 2017 to ?4.69 billion in 2018.

The UK’s tech sector is already worth more than ?116.5 billion a year.

During the three-day visit of Hancock, the two countries will sign a memorandum of understanding on sport.

India is an emerging power in international sport and, given the historic ties, the UK government wants to share its knowledge with India as it seeks to further develop its national approach to sport.