LONDON, 22 APRIL 2021: A new report by leading think tank Bridge India says that closer energy sector collaboration between the UK and India could propel bilateral relations in the next five years.
Bridge India interviewed investors, government stakeholders and businesses in both countries to create a comprehensive look at how to turbo-charge bilateral trade and investment. The report was created in collaboration with Howard Kennedy LLP and Mercia Asset Management, both of which are closely involved in the UK-India corridor in energy and cleantech.
Bridge India is a platform and think that helps India-watchers in the UK and Europe better engage with India on public policy. It hosts high-level dialogues and sector briefings for its members, and leads high-impact trade delegations to India and elsewhere.
The report says that the market opportunity for British SMEs to innovate in the UK and grow in India is currently untapped. Faradion, the world leader in sodium-ion battery technology, has expanded its presence significantly in India through licensing and building manufacturing capabilities. Nova Pangea Technologies innovation to valorise waste from sugar cane is a further example of British innovation flourishing in India.
The report recommends India further utilising London’s position as the go-to venue of choice for raising green bonds to finance its ambitious climate agenda. In the electric vehicle market, both countries have the opportunity to work together to build international industry champions. In part, this is important to act as a bulwark against China’s dominance of the EV supply chain.
While both markets are taking their first steps towards a hydrogen economy, there is considerable scope for technology sharing as the UK’s CCUS market grows, which could support India’s production of hydrogen from natural gas.
Alex Ellis CMG, British High Commissioner to India, said:“Under Prime Minister Modi’s leadership, India has made remarkable progress in improving energy efficiency and developing new renewables. India now produces some of the cheapest solar energy in the world. The UK is also showing leadership; we have nearly halved our emissions in less than 20 years whilst growing the economy by 75%.”
Gaitri Issar Kumar, IFS, High Commissioner of India to the UK, said:“Our nation’s guiding principle of ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat’ will, among other things, boost India’s Photo Voltaic cells manufacturing capacity and ensure their quality and competitiveness.”
“I congratulate Bridge India for their initiative in bringing out this Report on the potential of India-UK collaboration in the energy sector. It is a timely and welcome addition to the relevant information base,” she added.
Jonathan Cohen, Head of Energy, Howard Kennedy LLP, said: “The UK is leading the way in the transition to a net zero economy. With India’s vast population, fast-growing economy and rapid urbanisation and industrialisation, there are clearly many areas of mutual interest, knowledge sharing and collaboration between the two nations. This is a very exciting time for the UK-India relationship.”
Julian Viggars, CIO, Mercia Asset Management, said: “Innovation out of the UK will help accelerate India’s progress in the renewable energy sector and this type of collaboration that supports a global transition to a net zero economy should be applauded. Bridge India is a showcase of how countries can work to the benefit of each other and the international community as a whole.”
The UK’s recently announced Ten Point Plan for a Green Industrial Revolution seeks to make the UK a global leader in green technologies, such as offshore wind, low carbon hydrogen and green transport as well as innovative green finance mechanisms. The International Energy Agency (IEA) expects India to be the largest contributor to the global upswing in renewable energy in 2021, with solar photovoltaic panels (PV) and wind energy playing a key role in this transition.
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The report is available to download here: www.bridgeindia.org.uk/uk-india-energy-collaborations-report.
Saanya Gulati, Report Co-author
About Bridge India
Bridge India is a progressive non-profit think tank dedicated to discourse on public policy. But the ‘India Story’ abroad is often presented through a narrow lens, be it focusing only on business and the economy, society or policy landscape. Given its diversity, everything about India, and its polar opposite, is true in unison. Bridge India seeks to highlight and celebrate this nuance, to help India-watchers understand India better.
It is registered with the Charity Commission of England & Wales, number 1183696. Find out more at www.bridgeindia.org.uk.
About Howard Kennedy LLP
Howard Kennedy is a London based, full-service law firm specialising in providing straightforward advice to entrepreneurial businesses and individuals on domestic and international matters. The firm has an extensive clean energy practice which touches on every part of the sector, advising on high profile clean technology projects including wind, solar PV, combined heat & power, energy storage, district heating and cooling, electric vehicles, geothermal and wave and tidal. When advising Indian clients with interests in the UK energy market or vice versa, the collaborative working relationship with firm’s India team provide multi-lingual assistance and a wealth of experience in supporting bilateral trade between the UK and India. Find out more at www.howardkennedy.com/Expertise/Sectors/Energy.
About Mercia Asset Management
Mercia is a proactive specialist asset manager with a focus on regional businesses seeking venture, private equity or debt finance to scale their businesses. Mercia aims to be the first-choice provider of capital across our specialist private capital classes for businesses that typically seek less than £10million. They are exclusively a UK domestic investor, with focus on the UK regions. Find out more at www.mercia.co.uk.