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UK Visa Rules Welcome Businessmen, Silent on Students

Post-Brexit, United Kingdom is opening up to Indian businessmen announcing for the first time a very easy process visa under its "Registered Traveller Scheme" but she chose to remain silent on Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s request to provide "greater mobility" for students and researchers.

Speaking at the India-UK Tech Summit organised by CII, Theresa May, who was instrumental in tightening the visa regime earlier, said: "Indian nationals who frequently come to the UK and to fuel growth in both our countries, the entry process will become significantly easier." It means the businesses will have to fill fewer forms now to enter the EU-EEA (European Economic Area) passport regime and swifter passage through British airports.

"In short, more opportunities for Britain and India and a clear message that Britain is very much open for business… It is crucial that those who do need to travel between our countries for business can do so, that is the reason why when I was Home Secretary, I made visa process for Indians much easier," May said.

She pointed out that India now has best visa services and the same-day visa delivery system. She said that the UK government is listening to the pleas made by Indian businessmen. "Listening to the fact that there are many people from India who are to bring their skill, ideas, businesses to Britain for the good of your economy and ours," she added.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in his address at the India-UK Tech Summit 2016, recalled his visit to the UK last November when it ws decided to commemorate 2016 the ‘India-UK Year of Education, Research and Innovation’ and asked for more visas to Indian students and scholars.

"Even though the quantum of bilateral trade has remained at the same level for the past five years our investments in both directions have been robust. India is the 3rd largest investor in UK, and UK is the largest G20 investor in India. Both countries support large numbers of jobs in each other’s economies," he noted.

As India will soon have over a billion phone connections, an urban tele-density of around 154%, 350 million internet users, nearly 1 lakh Internet-Connected villages, the growth story offers an excellent success story, he said.

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