£9 billion pounds in deals - and London to become a hub for global rupee trading. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to the UK opens a new era of partnerhsip, says the UK's Cameron. Ciara Lee asks what it's in it for the two countries and their leaders.
Could this be the world's centre for offshore rupee trading? That's the plan, as Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi continues his visit to Britain. Cameron says London is ready to partner India in the venture, with plans to issue more than 1 billion pounds in bonds. NAB's Nick Parsons says the enthusiasm is no surprise. (SOUNDBITE) (English) GLOBAL HEAD FX STRATEGY, NATIONAL AUSTRALIA BANK, NICK PARSONS, SAYING: "Frankly if there was a market to be set up for coconuts then London would want to be at the centre of it. So it is no surprise whatsoever that London wants to be the centre. It is by far the most important trading centre for foreign exchange." Following the wining and dining of China's leader last month, Britain has been pulling out the stops for Modi's visit. And it's proving fruitful. More than twenty deals so far agreed, worth more than nine billion pounds. With India's economy now growing faster than China's, some are asking whether the country could be a stronger partner for Britain. Parsons says it's not about backing one horse over the other. (SOUNDBITE) (English) GLOBAL HEAD FX STRATEGY, NATIONAL AUSTRALIA BANK, NICK PARSONS, SAYING: "The Chinese economy is a ten trillion dollar economy. India's is two trillion. You add the two together and that's almost the size of the thirteen trillion which is the United States." 3.2 billion pounds of commercial investments and joint research projects have been approved. And a 1.3 billion pound investment from Vodafone. The Indian leader is also keen to buy 20 more BAE Systems Hawk trainer aircraft. Modi is seeking to restore his authority on the world stage after a defeat for his nationalist party in Bihar state last week. But he has plenty of supporters in the UK. He'll address 60,000 of them at Wembley on Friday evening. That's after a Buckingham Palace lunch with the Queen.