New Delhi, November 7: British Prime Minister Theresa May arrives in India on a visit aimed at promoting trade between the two countries, her first state trip outside Europe since assuming office. Theresa May was seen earlier disembarking from her plane which just landed in New Delhi while being accompanied by the British Secretary of State for Trade, Liam Fox.Also Read - Omicron Response: List of Countries That Have Put Travel Restrictions To African Nations

On disembarking from the plane, May was greeted by Indian officials as well as members of the British High Commission, here in New Delhi.  the main purpose of the British Prime Minister Theresa May’s arrival  in India on Sunday (November 6) is to begin a state visit aimed at promoting trade between the two countries. Also Read - What Motivated Shreyas Iyer to Get His Maiden Test Ton? Coach Pravin Amre Reveals

Theresa May and the United Kingdom`s trade secretary, Liam Fox while  landing in New Delhi were accompanied by business leaders from across the United Kingdom.The group is in India seeking to develop British business interests after the UK`s decision to leave the European Union, the so-called “Brexit”. It is May`s first state visit outside Europe since she assumed the office of prime minister, after a party leadership battle that revolved around the Brexit referendum. Also Read - Football: Manisha Kalyan Defies All Odds; Scored Dream Goal Against Brazil

May is leading a delegation of small and medium-size businesses to India as part of efforts to bolster trade with countries outside the European Union (EU) as Britain prepares to leave the bloc.The visit is in pursuit of her ambition of forging a new global role for Britain after it leaves the EU, May`s Downing Street office said in a statement.

The British prime minister will call on her Indian counterpart Narendra Modi and President Pranab Mukherjee in New Delhi on Monday (November 07).
She will also attend the India-United Kingdom Tech Summit to be held in the national capital and visit war memorial India Gate and Gandhi Smriti, a museum where India`s iconic freedom fighter Mahatma Gandhi spent the last few days of his life.

May will meet delegations from small and medium enterprises in southern Bengaluru city on Tuesday (November 08) before departing for London.
The British prime minister earlier said past trade missions had focused on big business, but she wants to adopt a new approach and would take small and medium companies from every region of the UK. As earlier stated, Liam Fox, Britain`s secretary of state for international trade, has joined the visit, during which a number of commercial deals are expected to be signed.

Leading Brexiteers in May`s government have locked on to India`s $2 trillion economy and market of 1.3 billion people as a chance to diversify trade and cushion any blow that a “hard” exit from the EU market could inflict.It won`t be possible to cut a bilateral trade deal until Britain has left the EU, but May and Modi will have an opportunity to stake out opening positions during her visit.

The process will not be easy. In addition to any eventual trade deal, India will want May to welcome more of its students and skilled workers, and that would require an unlikely U-turn from the tough line she has taken on immigration.However, behind closed doors, Indian officials are expected to sound her out on the terms of the UK`s departure from the EU and what it will mean for Indian firms that treat Britain as a gateway to Europe.

India has struggled for years to strike a free trade deal with the EU, with officials saying the bloc is a difficult partner to deal with because its leaders tend to deliver contradictory messages and often strike a tone they see as moralising.Bilateral trade in goods and services has moved sideways in recent years, totaling 19 billion pounds ($23.7 billion) in 2014, when Britain ran a deficit of 1.5 billion pounds.UK foreign direct investment into India declined, meanwhile, to 3.6 billion pounds in 2014 from a peak of 13.6 billion in 2011.