Arun Sudhaman 20 Feb 2013 // 12:00AM GMT
LONDON--The UK-India Business Council (UKIBC) has called in APCO for communications support as David Cameron attempts to boost trade ties between the two countries.
The appointment comes as the UKIBC plays a visible role in UK Prime Minister David Cameron's trip to India this week, leading a trade delegation that attempts to win more business for UK companies in the country.
Speaking on yesterday's Today programme, UKIBC chief executive Richard Heald noted that "India is at a tipping point", pointing to specific opportunities for UK companies in the defence and retail industries.
"You’ve seen a growth in FDI and retail and you’ve seen a number of fiscal measures," said Heald. "If you look at what the UK is good at, [India] is increasingly playing into the hands of UK industry."
Despite that, trade between the two countries remains low. Cameron's visit this week is part of an initiative to double UK trade with India by 2015.
The UKIBC, a business-led organization that aims to promote bilateral trade and investment, already works with APCO in India. The new brief extends its remit to the UK, and is led by former APCO MD Roger Hayes, currently a senior counselor in the firm's London office.
“We were keen to work with APCO in the UK because of their knowledge of the Indian market and we have also been impressed by the work of the APCO team in India, with whom we already work,” said Heald.
“APCO’s UK team looks forward to working with the UKIBC to achieve their objective of promoting bilateral trade and investment between the UK and India,” added APCO UK MD James Acheson-Gray. “It is an exciting time to be working on UK-India trade relations and it is an interesting brief, one which APCO Worldwide is passionate about working towards.”