British trade minister in India next week

London: British trade and investment minister, Lord Stephen Green, will be in India next week and will meet top ministers and officials in New Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai.

Lord Green is also expected to interact with a host of top industrialists and corporate chiefs, including Mahindra group chief Anand Mahindra, Tata group chairman Ratan Tata and ICICI Bank chief executive Chanda Kochhar in the course of his 14-18 March visit.

He is due to call on finance minister Pranab Mukherjee in Delhi and is also scheduled to hold talks with his Indian counterpart Anand Sharma, petroleum minister S Jaipal Reddy and urban development minister, Kamal Nath.

According to the UK trade ministry, India is the 18th largest market for Britain, for both export and import of merchandise goods. India's exports in 2009-10 were $6.23 billion and imports were valued at $4.42 billion.

Britain is also the fourth largest inward investor into India, ranking after Mauritius, Singapore and the US. Its share is above 5 per cent of the total foreign investment.

The cumulative total of equity invested in India till September 2010 stood at $6.21 billion.

Lately, India has also emerged as one of the largest investors in Britain, having made some big ticket buy-outs, such as steelmaker Corus and automakers Jaguar-Land Rover.