India, UK to strengthen bilateral ties in trade, defence: Pranab Mukherjee


India seeks to strengthen bilateral relations with the United Kingdom in all sectors especially in trade and investment, and defence, President Pranab Mukherjee has said.

Welcoming visiting British Prime Minister David Cameron at Rashtrapati Bhavan here yesterday, the President said his visit and its extensive agenda demonstrated the depth of United Kingdom's commitment towards India.

"India appreciates United Kingdom's desire for a new special relationship with India and fully reciprocates this. Both countries have intensified their multi-faceted bilateral agenda," a Rashtrapati Bhavan press release quoted Mukherjee as saying.

The President said Government of India values partnership of both countries and seeks to strengthen it in all sectors especially in trade and investment, defence, education, mscience and technology. "Both countries should give due priority to cooperation] in combating terrorism," Mukherjee said.

The President said the United Kingdom has been supportive of India's interests in international foraż in the European] mUnion, G-8, G-20 and the global context.

India appreciates United Kingdom's consistent support for India's membership of the four multilateral export control regimes and India's candidature of permanent membership of United Nations Security Council, he said.

Cameron conveyed to the President that the relationship was strong and good in all respects but there is potential to go even further. "The challenge he was setting to his own team was what more can United Kingdom do with India," the release said, quoting Cameron.

He further described the reform of the international financial institutions as an area where United Kingdom and India can work towards a common goal.

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