India and the UK have softened positions on most of their points of contention as both nations try to wrap up trade talks ahead of expected national polls next year, according to people with the knowledge of the matter.
While New Delhi has agreed to slash tariffs on British cars and scotch whisky, the UK is willing to relax some visa rules for Indian professionals, Indian officials said, asking not be identified as the discussions are private. Nevertheless, with immigration a politically sensitive subject in the UK, a British official indicated any visa relaxations are likely to be limited.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his British counterpart Rishi Sunak are pushing to double bilateral trade by 2030 through a pact that slashes tariffs and increases market access. The two governments hope to wind up the trade talks before year-end, Indian and British officials said.