India and the UK are moving closer in their plan to enhance the bilateral relationship between the two, especially in the defence sector

India and the United Kingdom on Thursday held the annual India-UK Bilateral Dialogue on Disarmament and Non-Proliferation in a virtual format and discussed a range of issues including nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation.

According to an official statement released by the Ministry of External Affairs, the two countries recognised the importance of the dialogue for enhancing mutual understanding and appreciation on international security issues that contribute to the bilateral strategic partnership.

During the summit, the two sides exchanged views on a range of contemporary issues of mutual interest in the area of nuclear, chemical, biological disarmament and non-proliferation, conventional weapons, outer space security and export control.

India and the UK are moving closer in their plan to enhance the bilateral relationship between the two, especially in the defence sector.

During his December 14-17 visit, UK Foreign Secretary Domic Raab met Prime Minister Narendra Modi and discussed ‘various facets of the strategic partnership’ between the two nations.

He also met with External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and discussed the immense opportunities for greater collaboration in diverse sectors in the context of the UK leaving the EU and the big geopolitical changes in a COVID-impacted world.

Both sides discussed five broad themes ranging from connecting people, trade and prosperity, defence and security, climate and health. The UK Foreign Secretary also met Minister of Environment, Forest and Climate Change Prakash Javadekar and discussed the shared ambition to shift the dial on climate change.

Raab concluded his visit on December 17 by signing a series of agreements in Bengaluru on Climate Change. He met with the Chief Minister of Karnataka B S Yediyurappa and signed an MoU between British Council and the Karnataka Government to accelerate cooperation in Higher Education partnerships.

India and the UK agreed on key elements of a 10-year ambitious India-UK roadmap also known as the ‘quantum leap’ focusing on enhancing the partnerships over the next 10 years.

The UK is an important country for India to increase its footprint in the Western world, particularly in Europe. India is also looking forward to taking this relationship ahead during the G7 Summit next year which is being hosted by the UK. British PM Boris Johnson has invited PM Modi to attend the same.

On the other hand, British PM Johnson will be visiting India to attend the Republic Day Celebrations on January 26 as the Chief Guest.