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Government of Maharashtra and UKIBC ink MoU on ease of doing business
Tuesday, 15 January, 2019, 12 : 00 PM [IST]
Our Bureau, Mumbai
The UK India Business Council (UKIBC) and the Government of Maharashtra inked a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to increase connections between UK businesses and the state, that will increase investments and economic growth and create jobs for both.

Maharashtra’s economy is witnessing a new momentum, with 30 per cent of the UK companies operating in India - including such industrial giants as JCB, Perkins Engines and Diageo -  based in the state and employing about a quarter of a million people across the state.

In fact, Maharashtra topped the UKIBC’s 2018 ease of doing business survey for the state most improving ease of doing business in the last five years, so it is no mystery that 25 per cent of the India-based UK companies are looking at further expansion into the state in the coming year.

Through a series of dialogues on the ease of doing business and annual ministerial and business delegation visits, MIDC and UKIBC will now be working together to facilitate trade and investment through collaboration, sharing information, promoting ease of doing business, and smoothing investor interactions in respective markets.

In short, this MoU - which was signed during a UKIBC delegation to the Partnership Summit 2019 in Mumbai, where leading UK businesses at showcased their commitment toward intensifying strategic investment in Maharashtra - will act as a long-term business framework for India-UK businesses and the foundation for bilateral cooperation.

At the Summit, the delegation held roundtable meetings with both Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis and Suresh Prabhu, minister of commerce and civil aviation, Government of India. The deliberations focussed on the businesses’ investments plans in the state and the support needed from the government and local industries to realise these opportunities.

Crispin Simon, British deputy high commissioner, Mumbai and West of India, and Her Majesty’s Trade Commissioner, South Asia, said, “Congratulations to MIDC (Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation) and UKIBC on this important partnership. Maharashtra has an impressive record in attracting international investment, but it is a competitive field, and UKIBC are well-equipped to help take the pitch to the next level.”

Speaking on the occasion, Richard Heald, group CEO, UKIBC, shared, “I am delighted to be deepening our relationship with the Maharashtra government, one of the most proactive states in India for business, and with whom we have a long and productive relationship.”

“Our roundtable today and the MoU takes this to the next level. It enables UKIBC to help UK companies learn more about the opportunities in Maharashtra and facilitates the dialogue between investors, ministers and senior bureaucrats necessary to deliver investment,” he added.

The MoU was signed by P Anbalagan, chief executive officer, on behalf of MIDC, the premier industrial infrastructure development agency of the Government of Maharashtra, and Richard McCallum, managing director, UKIBC, in the presence of state industries minister Subhash Rajaram Desai.

Talking about the MoU, Anbalagan stated, “Wherever you look – in finance, technology or education, our economic and personal ties are thriving and there is scope and willingness on both sides to do more.”

“The MoU establishes a broad-based understanding between the Government of Maharashtra and UKIBC that they will collaborate in areas of mutual interest to support their respective roles,” he added.
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