Amajor highlight of the event was the unveiling of the India-UK Infrastructure Finance Bridge

In a significant move to strengthen bilateral economic relations, India and the United Kingdom convened for the 12th round of the Economic and Financial Dialogue (EFD) in New Delhi earlier this week. The high-profile meeting was spearheaded by India's Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman and her UK counterpart,  Chancellor of the Exchequer Jeremy Hunt.

The primary focus of the dialogue, held on Monday (September 11, 2023), was to amplify mutual commitments in Financial Services, harnessing each nation's unique strengths. There was optimism towards India's efforts in bolstering financial services and investments, especially in GIFT IFSC, with the UK expressing its unwavering support.

A major highlight of the event was the unveiling of the India-UK Infrastructure Finance Bridge. This collaborative initiative is set to harness the combined expertise and investment capabilities of both nations, primarily bolstering India’s National Infrastructure Pipeline.

The dialogue also served as a platform for the exchange of knowledge, emphasizing the reinforcement of cooperation in pivotal areas such as FinTech partnerships, infrastructure development, and sustainable finance, all converging towards achieving long-term growth objectives. Additionally, discussions were extended towards deepening mutual cooperation on pressing macroeconomic and multilateral matters.

In the culmination of the dialogue, both the Union Finance Minister of India and the Chancellor of the Exchequer of the UK endorsed a joint statement, solidifying the commitments and the way forward.

Supplementing the main dialogue, the India-UK Financial Partnership (IUKFP) meeting was also organized, drawing attention from both nations. Co-chaired by esteemed business leaders Mr. Uday Kotak and Mr. Bill Winters, the gathering witnessed the presence of top business figures from both countries, as well as key financial regulators. This meeting primarily revolved around discussing policy papers and brainstorming on innovative avenues for an even deeper financial exchange and collaboration.

The overall sentiment was optimistic, with representatives from various financial bodies, including the Reserve Bank of India, Securities and Exchange Board of India, International Financial Services Centres Authority, UK Treasury, and the Bank of England, participating actively in the discussions.

The dialogue embodied the 2030 Vision that India and the UK are jointly fostering. This vision revolves around revitalised connections between the people of the two nations, re-energised trade, investment, and technological collaboration. Both countries aspire for enhanced defence and security cooperation as well, with sights on ensuring a more secure Indian Ocean Region and Indo-Pacific. Moreover, leadership in areas like climate, clean energy, and health are of utmost priority, aiming to act as a global force for good.