NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday held a bilateral meeting with his UK counterpart Rishi Sunak on the sidelines of the G20 Summit being held in the national capital under India's presidency. The meeting between the two leaders was held at the Bharat Mandapam in Pragati Maidan, the venue of the Summit. Talks between the two leaders followed their meeting held on the sidelines of the G7 Summit in Hiroshima in May this year in which they had discussed the India-UK free trade agreement, innovation, and science along with ways to strengthen the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership between the two countries.
The two countries are negotiating a Free Trade Agreement, talks for which had begun in 2022. The 12th round of negotiations for the UK-India Free Trade Agreement (FTA) took place from August 8 to 31 this year.
In August this year, Union Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal and the UK’s Secretary of State for Trade Kemi Badenoch took stock of the FTA and agreed on ways to progress the negotiations. The 13th round of negotiations is due to take place in September.
Earlier today, PM Modi and Rishi Sunak participated in Session 1 on 'One Earth' during the G20 Summit. Sunak said that the world is looking to G20 to provide leadership and that the leaders are meeting at a time of enormous challenges. He expressed confidence that the leaders will together be able to address the challenges. In a post shared on X, Sunak stated, "15 years ago, #G20 leaders came together for the first time to restore global growth after the financial crisis. We meet at a time of enormous challenges – the world is looking to the G20 once again to provide leadership. Together I believe we can address these challenges."
PM Modi welcomed world leaders, including US President Joe Biden, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, UK PM Rishi Sunak, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and others as they arrived to attend the Summit at the Bharat Mandapam venue.
Rishi Sunak and PM Modi warmly greeted each other with Namaste and shook hands. They two leaders also hugged each other as they posed for cameras.
Sunak, accompanied by wife Akshata Murty had arrived in Delhi on Friday. This is Rishi Sunak's first visit to India as Prime Minister since he assumed the office of Prime Minister of UK in October last year. India and the UK are bound by strong ties of history and culture, according to the Ministry of External Affairs. India’s multifaceted bilateral relationship with the UK intensified with its upgradation to a Strategic Partnership in 2004. (ANI)