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Cablegate: Uk Pm Brown Reaches Out to China and India

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PP RUEHAG RUEHDF RUEHIK RUEHLZ RUEHROV
DE RUEHLO #0498 0461656
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 151656Z FEB 08
FM AMEMBASSY LONDON
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 7473
RUEHBJ/AMEMBASSY BEIJING PRIORITY 1000
RUEHNE/AMEMBASSY NEW DELHI PRIORITY 0732
INFO RUCNMEM/EU MEMBER STATES COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RUCPDOC/DEPT OF COMMERCE WASHDC PRIORITY
RUEATRS/DEPT OF TREASURY WASHDC PRIORITY
RUEHBL/AMCONSUL BELFAST 0971
RUEHED/AMCONSUL EDINBURGH 0871

UNCLAS LONDON 000498

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE, SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ECON EFIN ETRD EINV UK
SUBJECT: UK PM BROWN REACHES OUT TO CHINA AND INDIA

REF: A) LONDON 347 B) LONDON 289

1. (SBU) SUMMARY: CBI's head of international affairs Gary Campkin
(PROTECT) described PM Brown's recent trip to China and India as
"warm, but frantic." The UK-Chinese relationship is going through an
especially friendly period in his opinion. In China, the PM
discussed climate change, trade, sovereign wealth funds, the
Olympics, the Shanghai Expo, intellectual property rights (IPR), and
market economy status (MES)for China. Campkin characterized Brown's
visit to India also as "warm," but he believes no market reforms are
likely to take place until after India's next election. In India,
the PM discussed trade, infrastructure, private-public partnerships
(PPP's), and climate change. END SUMMARY

CHINA
-------

2. (SBU) Gary Campkin, head of international affairs at the
Confederation of British Industry (CBI), gave us a read out February
1 of PM Brown's recent trip to China and India, which he accompanied
as part of the CBI delegation. (See reftel A for comments on the WTO
Doha negotiations).
Campkin said his main impression of Brown's visit to China is that
UK - Chinese relations are going through an especially congenial
period. He believes the Chinese view Brown as someone they can do
business with and are also pleased that the UK is not pressuring
them to revalue their currency. That Beijing is hosting the Olympics
in 2008 and London in 2012 cements the relationship. If the Dali
Lama visits the UK, however, it could upset this new relationship,
as it has in Germany, he suggested.

3. (SBU) Brown raised the topic of climate change with the head of
the Chinese National Development and Reform Commission. Campkin was
pleased that Brown used CBI's climate change task force report as a
blueprint for the meeting. He said the Chinese were interested in
obtaining British green technology, which the Chinese would then put
to use, but were not interested in discussing much else related to
climate change. Trade and the Doha WTO round were in the PM's
talking points, but the Chinese only made general comments on the
topic and treated it as a backseat issue. CBI also raised the issues
of IPR and market access, but found little traction with their
interlocutors.

4. (SBU) According to Campkin, Brown told the Chinese that the UK is
open to sovereign wealth fund (SWF) investment, but that
transparency is crucial. Brown also raised his concern that SWF's
may have access to funds below the market rate. The PRC lobbied CBI
hard for participation in the 2010 Shanghai Expo; which CBI declined
to do as it does not see it as a business event. Campkin said the
Chinese frequently raised the issue of the PRC obtaining market
economy status (MES). He said that some in HMG are more comfortable
with granting the Chinese MES status than CBI for broad political
reasons. CBI, along with some in government, argue that the decision
should be based on economic criteria and that Chinese still have not
met all the necessary conditions.

INDIA
------

5. (SBU) Campkin characterized Brown's trip to India also as warm,
but said there are still concerns. Brown's comments on UN reform
were favorably received in India. Campkin said no further economic
reforms are likely to happen before the 2009 elections in India. All
policy decisions in India are viewed through the prism of
alleviating poverty, which can make market reform difficult. Campkin
believes that India will not actively block the Doha round as long
as they get what they need on special products, but will also not
push for an agreement. (Ref a)

6. (SBU) Campkin said that the Indian approach to climate change is
similar to the Chinese. They wish to obtain advanced clean
technologies, but are not flexible in other areas. On a positive
note, CBI concluded an agreement with their Indian counterpart to
work to upgrade their abilities to analyze climate change. The
Indian business association was interested in CBI's report on
climate change. He also noted that India is becoming more receptive
to using private public partnerships (PPP's) in the provision of
services.


LEBARON

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