(From AFP)

Trade deals worth £9 billion (12.7 billion euros, $13.7 billion) will be announced during Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Britain, David Cameron said Thursday, as Modi indicated he wanted the UK to stay in the EU.

Modi and Cameron leave 10 Downing St. in London

London is rolling out the red carpet for Modi on his three-day visit to Britain, the first by an Indian prime minister in nearly 10 years. He will meet Queen Elizabeth II on Friday and address a huge rally at Wembley Stadium.

After talks with Cameron, Modi became the first Indian premier to address Britain’s parliament and was feted with a flypast by the Red Arrows aerobatics team, which trailed smoke over London in the colours of India’s flag.

Cameron announced the trade deals at a press conference and also revealed that £1.0 billion of rupee-denominated bonds would be traded in London.

“We want to forge a more ambitious, modern partnership, harnessing our strengths and working together for the long term to help shape our fortunes at home and abroad in the 21st century,” he said.

The deals are expected to include India buying more BAE Systems Hawk trainer jets — the same plane used by the Red Arrows — for its armed forces.

But when Modi was asked whether Britain should remain in the EU, in a referendum called by Cameron and being held by the end of 2017, Modi said: “As far as India is concerned, if there is an entry point to the European Union, that is the UK”. Read more

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