Transcript of the speech by Dominic McAllister, British Deputy High Commissioner Bengaluru at Invest Karnataka 2016.
I’m pleased the UK is participating at “Invest Karnataka” as one of 7 partner countries.
I am Dominic McAllister, the new British Deputy High Commissioner in Bengaluru. The British Deputy High Commission here works with the state government, business community and civil society to deliver prosperity for both the UK and India.
At the UK country session today we will be focusing on smart cities.
British companies with their world-class consulting, project management and engineering skills are well placed to help plan, design and build these new cities.
In September 2015, Lord Francis Maude of Horsham, Minister of State for Trade and Investment launched ‘India’s smart cities programme - the UK offer to build together’. This report, commissioned by UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) India from Ernst &Young, scoped the potential opportunities for both UK and Indian companies vis-à-vis Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ambition of building 100 smart cities in India.
UK companies need to demonstrate to India that they understand Indian needs and have the requisite strengths to offer. Based on an analysis of UK strengths against the current skills gap in Indian smart cities there are significant opportunities for UK companies to engage in the Indian smart city market.
The Karnataka cities of Belgaum and Davangere have recently made the shortlist of 20 Indian cities released by the Indian Urban Development Ministry. The British government looks forward to working with the Karnataka government in further developing these city projects and more widely in Karnataka on smart city initiatives. During Prime Minister Modi’s recent visit to the UK he referred to the Indo/UK relationship as “an unbeatable combination” in forging successful partnerships that can bring immense benefits to both countries.
British PM David Cameron has said, ‘Team India, Team UK - together we are a winning combination’. The UK wants a stronger, wider, deeper partnership with India, particularly with pioneering states such as Karnataka. I wish this UK country seminar every success.