But Cameron seems to be stuck in a groove of the past, which is best encapsulated by an essay in The Economist titled "Ties that no longer bind" with a strap-line "David Cameron returns to Delhi more as a supplicant than a benefactor."
Nothing could sum up the hopelessness of the visit better than news reports, quoting the British Prime Minister's Office, suggesting that one of the British leader's objectives was to press India to purchase the Eurofighter Typhoon as its medium multi-role combat aircraft (MMRCA).
TradeThis is somewhat curious because the contest for the MMRCA is over and the French Dassault Rafale has won and is currently negotiating its price and other terms with New Delhi. For the record, the Indo-French joint statement after the Hollande visit noted: "Both sides noted the ongoing progress of negotiations on the MMRCA programme and look forward to their conclusion." This does not leave much room for doubt. Cameron will have his hands full in explaining the AgustaWestland deal, currently mired in charges of corruption.
To go by what has been written up on the visit, Cameron's agenda seems fairly straightforward - promoting trade. But there is little that Britain produces that India may want to import, and, perhaps, vice versa.
This does not mean there are no products that could be traded, but that British companies are not geared to export in the manner of small and middle companies in France and Germany. Since Britain is big in services, there will be a lot of effort on the part of UK to push for opening up of the financial services and retail sector, but these are areas where India wants reciprocity, on issues such as the ease of movement of skilled personnel. Anyway, India is in an election mode and will not take any significant decision here.