EU-India "free trade agreement" will allow flood of Indian skilled workers into Britain

Posted By: Nairita Das
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London, Oct 9 (ANI): A new European Union trade deal with India, which is scheduled to be signed in December, would reportedly allow thousands of Indian workers to enter Britain.

According to The Telegraph, the planned "free trade agreement" would allow skilled Indian IT workers, engineers and managers come to Europe in return for European companies gaining access to India's huge domestic market.

The deal has split the Conservative-Liberal Democrat Coalition. While Vince Cable, the Business Secretary, and William Hague, the Foreign Secretary, favoured the bill saying the EU-India agreement must go ahead because it is worth hundreds of millions of pounds to business, many important leaders, including Prime Minister David Cameron and Home Secretary Theresa May have opposed it. he duo and other Conservatives, have insisted that the government should uphold a high-profile pledge to bring down net immigration, which is currently at 176,000 entrants a year.

Cabinet talks over the deal would reportedly begin next week.

The European Commission has asked for comments by the end of October from the Cabinet and other EU governments on a negotiating position that was cancelled with the Indians over the summer.

India has insisted on increased mobility for its skilled workers in return for reduced tariffs on European products and the lifting of some restrictions on businesses bidding for public procurement contracts, the paper said.

Under the current EU negotiating position, skilled Indian professionals would be allowed to work in any EU country under contract. Britain will be bound by any final EU agreement and British companies will be able to recruit in sectors such as information technology, management consultancy and engineering.

A Brussels study has predicted that under an EU-wide deal with India, Europe's economy would grow by 3.9 billion pounds a year. (ANI)

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