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Greater Manchester strengthens links with India’s most industrial region

Greater Manchester has announced a new partnership with India’s State of Maharashtra, home to the city of Mumbai, which will open up new opportunities for trade and collaboration. 

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The partnership makes Greater Manchester the first UK city region to establish a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Indian state, which is the most industrialised region in India.

Led by the Manchester India Partnership (MIP) and the Maharashtra State Innovation Society, the agreement will support business, skills, low carbon, healthcare and other collaborations over the next five years.

Greater Manchester’s graphene and advanced materials sector is set to benefit from new opportunities across industries such as engineering, aerospace and automotive.

There are also plans to boost the startup ecosystem by connecting incubators in both regions and supporting access to funding, networks, mentors, and infrastructure.

Several companies from Maharashtra already have bases in Greater Manchester, including steel, energy and textiles conglomerate Welspun and engineering services firm L&T Technology Services.

Credit: Manchester India Partnership

The relationship between the two regions has grown since a Manchester Mayoral visit to India in 2019. Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham said:

“Greater Manchester’s partnership with the State of Maharashtra will build on the important links our regions have nurtured, whilst supporting the shared challenges and opportunities that affect us and our wider economies and communities. This is an important step for us as a city region – and also supports the strong relationship the UK and India are developing.”

Jo Ahmed, Deputy Chair of the MIP, added:

“There are close synergies between the two regions – from healthcare and advanced manufacturing sectors, to our thriving startup and tech communities. It is also an opportunity to strengthen links with our universities and sector specialisms, to help each other develop the skills needed for future innovation.”

Earlier in 2021, the UK announced an ‘enhanced trade partnership’ with India that included £1 billion worth of investment deals, paving the way for a more comprehensive Free Trade Agreement in future.

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