World news story

British minister welcomes better flight connections between UK and India

Virgin Atlantic and Jet Airways expanded their code share agreement in August 2015, offering new travel options from four Indian cities.

Lord Francis Maude in Delhi

Speaking on the third leg of a three-city visit to India on 10 September, the Rt. Hon Lord Francis Maude of Horsham, the United Kingdom’s Minister of State for Trade and Investment, welcomed a code-share agreement between British airline Virgin Atlantic and Indian carrier Jet Airways.

Virgin and Jet customers can now buy tickets from Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Chennai and Kolkata, connecting to Virgin Atlantic’s Delhi - London Heathrow service and vice-versa.

Lord Maude said:

This partnership between prominent British and Indian airlines will help ease air travel for thousands of passengers, improving connectivity between the UK and four major Indian cities. It is an excellent example of strengthening ties between our two countries and embodies the spirit of our ‘GREAT for Collaboration’ campaign, which celebrates great British and Indian companies working together for mutual benefit.

The agreement offers customers the convenience of having all of their boarding passes issued at the originating airport on these routes, whether their travel originates in the India or UK.

Nick Parker, Head of India and Middle East at Virgin Atlantic said:

In addition to our daily direct service between Delhi and London, it’s really important to us to be able to offer our customers convenient connections to get to where they want to fly. As part of our commitment to the Indian market we already operate a successful code-share with Jet Airways between Mumbai and London and we’re delighted that our partnership is allowing us to open up other popular destinations in India for our customers.

Lord Maude’s visit is focusing on deepening commercial ties between the UK and India and highlights how the UK’s unique offer to India complements Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s aspirations for India.

During his first day in Delhi, Lord Maude unveiled a limited edition portrait of Her Majesty the Queen taken by renowned British photographer David Bailey as a part of the celebrations to commemorate the longest reign by a British monarch.

He also visited the state-of-the-art MMTC-PAMP facility outside Delhi, which has a partnership with the UK’s Royal Mint, and struck an authentic gold sovereign coin bearing Her Majesty’s image in the only location outside the United Kingdom where sovereigns are minted. The minister also selected a sovereign that would be sent back to London as part of the trial of the Pyx, a millennium old tradition where coins are tested to ensure that they are within the statutory limits for metallic composition, weight and size. The minister toured the facility with MMTC-PAMP Managing Director, Rajesh Khosla, and the United Kingdom Royal Mint representative, Martyn Smith, where he learned about this high value, hi-tech collaboration between UK and Indian organisations.

The centre piece of the Delhi-leg of the visit is the India-UK Business Convention, a gathering of several hundred major British and Indian CEOs, including some of the top investors in India. Lord Maude will deliver the keynote address to the convention, extending his support for trade and investment between the two countries. He will also launch ‘India’s Smart Cities Programme – The UK offer to build together’ – a report that scopes the potential opportunities for both UK and Indian companies vis-à-vis Indian PM Modi’s ambition of making 100 smart cities in India.

Further information:

  • GREAT for Collaboration is an ambitious an exciting new campaign to showcase India-UK business collaboration. The campaign has been launched as a direct response to the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s call to the world to ‘Make in India’. The campaign will celebrate and inspire new partnerships, and encourage greater awareness of the scale of the UK’s commitment to India. The overall objective is to increase business between the two countries.

For media queries, plaese contact:

Stuart Adam, Head,
Press and Communications
British High Commission, Chanakyapuri
New Delhi 110021
Tel: 44192100; Fax: 24192411

Mail to: Jagori Dhar or call on +91-9811200481

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Published 10 September 2015