By Mousume Roy, APAC Reporter, HCL Technologies Ltd.
At the start of his two-day visit to India, UK Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, announced plans to expand ties between the two countries. On Thursday, he confirmed the UK would invest over £1 billion in areas ranging from software engineering to health, creating almost 11,000 jobs across the UK.
Prime Minister Johnson said, “I see vast possibilities for what our two great nations can achieve together. From next-generation 5G telecoms and AI to new partnerships in health research and renewable energy — the UK and India are leading the world.”
The Prime Minister announced investments in science and tech collaborations, including a digital health partnership and a joint investment fund for Indian deep-tech and AI start-ups, supported by both the governments. He also confirmed new AI scholarships for Indian students, jointly funded by the UK government’s Chevening programme and India’s Adani Group, and a £6 million investment by AI healthcare specialists Qure.ai to open a centre of excellence in the UK.
Commenting on the announcement, Ashish K. Gupta, Sr. CVP and Head of Europe and Africa said: “The UK’s commitment to expanding ties with India, including investment in technology and skills collaboration, is very welcome news and bodes well for companies working in both countries to deepen relationships and leverage each other’s strengths for solutions and services the world consumes.”
He added: “Deepening areas of collaboration in areas such as AI, healthcare, sustainable services and 5G, that are big drivers for digital transformation, will significantly enhance the strong ties that bind the Indian Technology and UK Technology companies together.”
Trade between India and the UK is worth an estimated £23 billion each year.
Both the countries are also launching a virtual Hydrogen Science and Innovation hub to speed up affordable green hydrogen, as well as new funding for the Green Grids Initiative announced at COP26, and collaboration on joint work on the electrification of public transport across India.
Last year, the two countries agreed on a UK-India Comprehensive Strategic Partnership, which the UK government said would bring more than £533 million investment into the country from India.
HCL’s commitment to the UK
Since 1997, HCL has been present in the UK and today its UK operation employs 3,500+ people across various locations, supporting 50+ clients. HCL was recently recognized as a Top Employer in the UK for the fifteenth consecutive year by the prestigious Top Employers Institute.
In a virtual meeting last year, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson and HCL’s CEO C Vijayakumar and Sr. Corp. Vice President, Ashish Kumar Gupta, created stronger business ties between the UK and India. During the meeting, C Vijayakumar reaffirmed the company’s commitment to the UK, highlighting HCL’s successful partnerships with many of the UK’s largest corporations to assist them on their growth and transformation journeys.