Speaking notes of speech by British High Commissioner to India Dominic Asquith at the Red Arrows reception in New Delhi, 5 October 2016.
Good evening everyone and welcome to our garden on this fragrant evening to help us welcome the Royal Air Force’s world-famous aerobatic display team the Red Arrows.
You may remember ‘the Reds’ from last year, when they painted the London sky in the famous colours of India’s Tiranga in honour of Prime Minister Modi’s visit to London, and the friendship between our two countries.
It is a therefore a great privilege for the United Kingdom that the Red Arrows have been invited to perform at Indian Air Force day on 8 October, in front of Air Chief Marshal Arup Raha. You could not find a more visible and visually exciting example of the historical strength of our defence relationship. In addition, the Red Arrows also represent a major part of our countries’ futures.
I use the word ‘visible’ because the aircraft flown by the Red Arrows is a striking symbol of the GREAT spirit of collaboration between the UK and India. The UK is and has been making in India, the British-designed Hawk being jointly developed in Bengaluru by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) and BAE Systems is one of the greatest examples.
123 aircraft have been ordered by the Indian Air Force and the Navy, of which 99 have so far been built, in Bengaluru, under licence by HAL.
The United Kingdom understands and gets ‘Make in India’ better than any other country. But ‘Make in India’ is about more than just assembling the parts. British and Indian companies, research institutes and universities collaborate across many industries, bring their minds together to innovate and design, improve skills and develop cutting-edge technology.
The vast breadth of this partnership will be on display at the India-UK TECH Summit which takes place in Delhi from 7 to 9 November 2016.
The Summit will bring together businesses, government, thought leaders and star speakers from both our countries to find new, ever-more exciting opportunities to deliver jobs and prosperity for people in India and Britain. We will have robots, a Mars lander, cutting edge cars, life-changing digital healthcare apps, a Smart Cities zone, and even a little robot from Star Wars called R2-D2.
The TECH Summit will be like nothing else we’ve ever done in India. I do hope to see you there.
Now I’d like to introduce you to the stars of the show, the Red Arrows team led by Air Vice Marshal Turner.