High Commission of India and UK India Business Council announce ‘Access India Programme’

By Simon Jones

The announcement is further proof that the UK-India trade relationship is strengthening at an important time for both countries

The High Commission of India in London, and the UK India Business Council (UKIBC), have today announced the inception of the ‘Access India Programme’ – a market entry support programme aimed at facilitating investments by UK SMEs in India. This programme builds upon the flagship programme of Government of India, ‘Make in India’. It is the first of its kind to implement the ‘Make in India’ concept to facilitate investments from the UK.

Launched on September 27 in London at the High Commission of India by High Commissioner Mr Y. K. Sinha, the ‘Access India Programme’ is designed to provide UK businesses with the necessary market entry support critical for market entry decisions and successful entry into the Indian market. Indian High Commission and UKIBC will study and thereafter identify UK SMEs which have considerable potential to succeed in the Indian Market.

By using rigorous diagnostics and analysis of SMEs potential, the partnership will look to create a transformative blended programme, linking SMEs to a strong support networks of prime manufacturers, OEMs, trade bodies and Chambers of Commerce.

The programme is far-reaching, and will be implemented with the support of not only the concerned Central and State Government Ministries in India, but also by engaging key industry partners who can support UK companies in various aspects of market entry into India. These will include advisory, law, taxation and accounting firms. Some larger UK companies with operations in India will provide mentoring support to the selected AIP SMEs.

The UK India Business Council will assist HCI London to plan, structure, implement, coordinate, and monitor the AIP programme with other programme partners, and assist in the entry of selected UK companies into India.

The Indian High Commissioner to the UK said;

“We are launching the Access India Programme (AIP), a first of its kind in the UK, to facilitate investments by small and medium scale enterprises in the UK into India. In the last three years India has received Foreign Direct Investments worth US$ 175 billion. Government of India is committed and focused to improving India’s ranking in ease of doing business.

Through AIP, we aim to take forward the Make in India programme of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi. I hope that by implementing this programme, we can highlight the latest developments in India in ease of doing business, facilitate initiatives by SMEs and enhance bilateral investment between the two countries.”

UK India Business Council CEO, Richard Heald said;

“We look forward to working with the High Commission of India on this important initiative. This is further proof that the UK-India economic relationship is ever-strengthening at a crucial time for both countries.

“As an organization with specific contracts with the UK Government and Indian Government through dialogues such as JETCO, EFD and the UK India CEO Forum, we are well placed to deliver. Once implemented, we’re sure that this partnership will go some way to ensuring UK businesses get the platform they need to succeed in India.” 

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