Europe News

Modi in UK: Will the deal flow continue?

Can Modi deliver on his mandate?
Tracking Indian PM Modi's visit to the UK
Bihar loss a setback for Modi government
Is this the end of Modi-mania? Nope!

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's U.K. trip was accompanied by platitudes about the "rich promise" of closer trading links from the leader.

Deals worth more than 9 billion pounds ($13.7 billion) and close to 2,000 U.K. jobs were announced Thursday. While historically trading links have been close between the two countries – India was once subject to British rule – this has fallen behind in recent years. Modi is seen internationally as a leader who can potentially cut red tape and make India easier for foreign investors to operate.

India’s Modi’s passage to the UK: Not smooth sailing

"We have fallen back (in the trading relationship), but there is a lot of potential for improvement," Mihir Kapadia, CEO of India-focused fund Sun Global Investments, told CNBC.

As China, and commodities-focused emerging markets like Russia and Brazil, have fallen from favor, India, which is less dependent on commodity exports, may look like a better bet for emerging market investors.

Modi's UK visit: $9B in deals done, protests at No.10

"Energy prices coming down has been a big boost for India, and very fortunate for Mr Modi as he has been able to invest and cut the deficit," Kapadia said.

Sun is launching what it calls a "curry bond" – an exchange-traded fund (ETF) listed in Frankfurt and London which invests in Indian state-owned companies.

Yet India may not be the safest of emerging market bets yet.

Rob Stothard | WPA Pool | Getty Images

The charismatic Modi's reputation as a vote-winner has also been dented by recent defeats in provincial elections. What should be a triumphal appearance at London's Wembley Stadium Friday, with close to 60,000 members of the U.K.'s Indian community, may be overshadowed by protests over what is seen as growing intolerance towards political and religious differences in Modi's India.