Working with India

As one of the world’s largest economies and democracies, India is a powerhouse that will play a major role in shaping the world in the coming decades. India is the second largest investor in the UK and a vital trading partner, making it a key priority market for Leeds City Region and many of our international businesses.

UK and India

Following the UK’s exit from the EU, relationships with key international partners are even more important. There is strong political support in both the UK and India to build greater trade and investment links between the two nations.

In July 2020, the UK and India held the 14th Joint Economic and Trade Committee (JETCO). The UK’s former International Trade Secretary Liz Truss and India’s Minister of Railways and Commerce & Industry Piyush Goyal agreed to explore opportunities for expanding and deepening our trade relationship. Bilateral trade between the UK and India was worth £24 billion in 2019 and there is huge potential to strengthen this trading relationship. 

India is now the fifth largest economy in the world, with a GDP of £2.3 trillion, overtaking France and the UK in 2019, with a GDP growth among one of the highest in the world. In 2010, India was only the ninth largest economy in the world, but is forecast to be nearly as big as Germany by 2024.

India is home to 1.3 billion people, with the fastest growing population in the world and 48% under 21. By 2022, the median age of India will be just 28, compared to 37 in China and the US, and 45 in Western Europe.

India is now the UK’s second largest source of foreign direct investment, investing in 120 projects and creating 5,429 new jobs in the UK in 2019. Indian companies in the UK employ over 110,000 with combined revenues of £41.2 billion, while trade in goods between West Yorkshire and India is estimated to be worth over £360 million.

Recent investment and activity by Indian companies in West Yorkshire includes: 

  • India-based global streaming platform Clean Slate’s new partnership with Yorkshire Cricket, announced in May 2022, currently in the region shooting for its upcoming Netflix film “Chakda ‘Xpress”
  • The launch of global technology and business process outsourcing company Mphasis’ new UK Centre of Excellence in Leeds in 2021.
  • Global tech company Mastek’s significant presence in Leeds, which includes ambitious new graduate programme alongside expansion plans.
  • The Leeds-based UK headquarters and new state-of-the-art Media Centre for Prime Focus Technologies
  • The UK manufacturing site and active pharmaceutical ingredients plant for global pharmaceutical company Dr Reddy’s, based in Kirklees.
  • Filming the Bollywood movie “Gold” with Akshay Kumar in Bradford with over 2,000 local extras involved in the production

Strengthening relationships with the country represents a huge opportunity for businesses in West Yorkshire.

International collaboration, trade, and investment are crucial to ensure sustained economic growth in the Northern Powerhouse and we are committed to developing stronger links with India to drive forward global trade and inward investment initiatives.

India presents an opportunity for Leeds City Region because of:

  • The scale of the opportunity
  • The extensive partnerships between China and Leeds City Region, including university partnerships and major business investments
  • The natural fit between Leeds City Region sector strengths and India’s key focus areas for economic development
  • The extensive diaspora community, described warmly by former Prime Minister Boris Johnson as a 'living bridge' between the two countries

Get in touch for advice or support

For more information on how we are building relationships with India, please contact us below.

  1. Inbound activity

    Leeds City Region is proud to be home to a number of major Indian-owned businesses. These businesses are driving innovation in the Digital and Creative, and Manufacturing sectors, in partnership with our nine universities.

    Read more about Inbound activity