Indian students going to the United Kingdom for higher education almost doubled with 1,08,000 study visas being issued in the year ending March 2022.
This is a 93% increase compared to the previous year, showcasing that education is one of the mainstays of the ‘Living Bridge’ between the UK and India, said Nigel Adams, Minister of State in the Cabinet Office, UK. The UK is a world leader in education, housing four of the top 10 universities in the world, eight in the top 50, and 17 in the top-100 figuring on the QS World University Ranking 2022.
In a chat with journalists here, he said Indians continue to be the top nationality in the skilled worker category, accounting for over two-fifths (44%) of UK work visas granted globally. Over 80,000 skilled work visas were granted to Indian professionals in the year ending March 2022, thus showcasing the strong ties between the two countries, he said.
Mr. Nigel said Telangana has an important role to play in growing economic relations between India and UK given its potential in education and life sciences. There is greater scope for cooperation in defence and health sectors with Hyderabad being home to top hosptials in the country.
In the roadmap as envisaged by British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in their meeting as well, Telangana has a huge role to play in defence and security, health, climate change and clean energy.
The Minister also said a meeting with Telugu film producers threw up some administrative issues, one of them being the lack of a centralised agency for permissions to shoot in Britain. The issue would be sorted out soon so that Telugu filmmakers can have a hassle-free experience in the UK given the huge reach of Telugu films and its growing stature in Indian film industry.
On the role of the UK in the Russia-Ukraine conflict, he said that the country was the second biggest contributor of humanitarian aid to Ukraine apart from strengthening Ukraine’s defence forces with modern military equipment. British families are opening up their homes to Ukrainian refugees and he personally had also taken a Ukrainian family under his shelter. Mr. Nigel said international efforts to end the conflict were on and India has a vital role to play in terms of diplomacy.
British Deputy High Commissioner to Telangana and Andhra Pradesh Andrew Fleming was also present.