New Delhi, Feb.7 : British Immigration Minister and Minister of the West Midlands, Liam Byrne, will arrive here today.
According to a press release, in his capacity as the Regional Minister of the West Midlands, Byrne will be calling in on several high profile Indian businesses to promote the trade and investment activities between India and the British Midlands region.
The British Midlands is a UK government-funded organisation, especially dedicated to attracting international businesses to the region. The British Midlands comprises of two of the nine English regions, namely, East Midlands and West Midlands. Both the regions have Regional Economic Development agencies (RDAs), which are funded by the UK Government.
The major cities comprise of Birmingham, Nottingham, Derby, Warwick, Coventry, Leicester, Lincoln, Northampton and Wolverhampton. It is also the UK's premier business location for automotive, engineering, aerospace and IT companies from all over the globe and has representative offices in North America, Japan, Asia and Europe. Over 3,200 overseas owned companies are already present in the British Midlands.
The British Midlands has shown a keen interest in Indian companies in the last few years. Recognising the increasing desires and abilities of the Indian businesses to expand globally, the British Midlands set up their representative office in India over five years ago for the purpose of attracting Indian investment into the region.
Recently there has been a tendency for Indian companies to invest overseas in order to expand their presence worldwide and enhance their international competitiveness. Buoyed by an upbeat economy, India is now becoming a well-known global contender in several sectors and companies are keen on exploring this opportunity.
Speaking about his visit to Mumbai, Byrne said: "India is emerging as one of the top level contenders in the global scenario today making it a fantastic time to do business with India. Indian companies are riding on an economic tidal wave and are seeking to make their presence known internationally."
He added, "The quality and size of Indian businesses are growing continuously and India is one economy to watch out for globally. In my capacity as Minister of the West Midlands, I feel especially honoured that I have had an opportunity to visit this extraordinary country and hope that we will continue to work with the Indian companies who wish to expand their businesses to our region." There are now over 40 Indian owned companies in the British Midlands and half of these have arrived in the last two years creating over 1,300 jobs.
Several high profile Indian companies like Tata Consultancy Services, ICICI Bank, State Bank of India, Mahindra and Mahindra and Tata Motors have already have already set up base within our region. The presence of 18 world-class universities in this region and a strong focus on research and development makes it a fertile environment for new businesses.
Accompanying Byrne on his visit to India, Richard Butler, Head of Inward Investment, British Midlands said, "In the last two years, Indian investments into our region have more than doubled in terms of number of companies setting up in the region and we are keen on tapping the Indian market further."
He added, "The rapid expansion of Indian investment into our region in the last few years just proves how important this market has become ands we are grateful for this opportunity to build relations with a number of key Indian companies."
The British Midlands is at the heart of both the UK's transport network and the UK transport industry. Jaguar, Toyota, Land Rover and Aston Martin, all have based their UK headquarters, main vehicle assembly plants and research and development facilities in the region.
The Jaguar-Land Rover deal is of significant importance to the region with Tata Motors currently in focussed discussions with Ford in the race to take over these two iconic brands, which are located in the region. This would bring a significant amount of revenue from India into the British Midlands.