Chancellor Hammond leading UK trade mission to India

Indian customers check the quality of lemons for sale at a market in Ahmedabad Image copyright AFP
Image caption Philip Hammond says it is vital to do trade with vibrant economies

Chancellor Philip Hammond will lead a business delegation to India next week to drum up trade as the UK begins the process of leaving the EU.

He will be joined by international trade minister Mark Garnier and Bank of England governor Mark Carney for the talks in New Delhi and Mumbai.

Mr Hammond said boosting trade and investment "beyond the borders of Europe" was more important than ever.

He said it was vital to make links with "the world's most vibrant economies".

Last week Prime Minister Theresa May formally activated Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty, starting a two-year countdown for quitting the 28-nation bloc.

'India's transformation'

The UK has started looking to establish new trade deals with non-EU nations over the coming years, although it cannot sign them while still a member of the bloc.

Mr Hammond said the UK was about to embark on an "exciting new phase of our economic history".

As well as Mr Garnier, Mr Carney and Commercial Secretary Baroness Neville-Rolfe, the Treasury said the trade mission includes some of the UK's most experienced leaders in financial services and financial technology.

Mr Hammond added: "The UK is perfectly placed to be India's financial partner of choice, helping it to raise the finance needed for its continued rapid growth and my message will be 'make in India, finance in the UK'.

"Our innovative markets have helped support the development of whole new product classes such as masala bonds that will support India's transformation."

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