New Delhi, Jan 21 : Union Commerce and Industry Minister Kamal Nath on Monday said that the Centre is seeking investments from the United Kingdom (UK) in the areas like highway projects, bridges, expressways, ports, power generation, water plants and water management techniques.
"We consider the UK as one of the most important source of foreign direct investment (FDI) for India not only amongst the European Union (EU) countries but also vis- -vis other countries in the world," Kamal Nath said while addressing the India-UK chief executive officers' (CEO) round table.
"With a share of 37 percent in EU's total outflow of FDI in non-EU countries, I think UK is a very natural and important partner for a country like India that requires massive investment for its infrastructure needs," he added.
UK Minister of State for Trade and Investment Lord Digby Jones, Indian Minister of State for Industry Ashwani Kumar and senior officials from both the countries attended the round table.
Kamal Nath went on to say that so far investments from the UK was mainly in "the sectors such as telecom, chemicals, fuels, service sector etc."
India is now the third largest foreign investor in the UK in terms of projects, second only to the US and Japan.
According to Ernst and Young's European Investment Monitor 2006 report, in the first half of 2006, Indian investment in the UK overtook Japan, making India the second largest investor in that country.
Since 1991, the UK is the third largest investor in India with a cumulative inflow of over four billion dollars. FDI inflows from UK in 2005, 2006 and 2007 (up to October) have been over 219 million dollars, over 1749 million dollars and over 398 million dollars respectively, a government release said.
On the trade front, the UK is the fourth largest trading partner of India with bilateral trade of nearly 10 billion dollars in 2006-07, which is about three per cent of India's total trade.