India now a Trusted Business and Investments Destination
In his ongoing tour of Europe, Union Minister of Commerce & Industry, Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution and Textiles Shri Piyush Goyal has been elaborating on how a plethora of opportunities in India make it one of the world’s most trusted business and investment destinations today.
During his address at the CEOs Business Interactive session yesterday (April 13) in Rome, Italy. Goyal said that India is an open country with global linkages with the trade negotiations underway with EU and EFTA.
The Minister said that high targets must be set in the India-Italy partnership as there is a lot of new potential especially in light of the recently elevated Strategic Partnership. He said that India has witnessed 55% growth in the overall exports in the last 2 years. He said that there are about 700 Italian companies operating in India and this is the most opportune time to be in India. The Minister also mentioned that India will provide a very robust and forward-looking policy framework with retrospective changes.
The Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, Government of Italy, Mr. Antonio Tajani also participated in the interactive session and addressed the industry captains. Mr. Tajani expressed that there is a need to work together to create a better line of next generation in both the countries by backing MSMEs and industry.
Shri Goyal deeply appreciated Mr. Tajani for the deep engagement and said that there is a tremendous potential for growth in the India-Italy partnership and through this visit new ideas have emerged. He said that the countries are connected by tradition, culture, shared values, rule of law and aspiration to achieve more and to work as one. He also expressed that India-Italy will grow together, achieve together, and conquer together.
The CEOs Business Interactive session was organised in Rome, Italy by the Embassy of India in Rome, Italy in association with the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and Confindustria. The session had participation from more than 70 CEOs from Indian and Italian companies.
The Italian business was represented by giants like Sparkle, Elettronica, Piaggio, Lamborghini, ITA, etc. The CEOs mentioned that India is an important economic player and it is time to step up the cooperation at both the government and industry level. They also mentioned that Italian companies are exploring various investment opportunities present in India.
Vice President CII and Chairman and Managing Director, ITC Limited, Mr. Sanjiv Puri, emphasised that signing of India – EU FTA could be a catalyst for further enhancing India Italy relationship. Further, Director General CII, Mr. Chandrajit Banerjee thanked Confindustria for their cooperation and suggested different areas of cooperation. President FIEO (Federation of Indian Export Organisations), Dr. A Saktivel mentioned that India has achieved US$ 770 billion export in 2022-23 due to the robust policy and Italian businesses should look at India as their export hub. He said that FIEO will ensure support to their establishments in India.
Ambassador Raffaele Langella from Confindustria said that India is in a very important economic phase, and it is time to step up the cooperation. Piaggio CEO Mr. Matteo Colaninno mentioned that both Governments are working fast to make Enterprises in both countries to explore opportunities. Mr. Jai Shroff, UPL expressed the strong linkages on Food Sustainability and the importance of collaboration on the same.
Similarly, on April 12, Sri Goyal had a highly productive meeting in France. He mentioned that there is a huge delta of opportunities in India during his address at the India – France Business Summit and CEOs Roundtable. “We are one the largest consumers of goods and services. Exports of goods and services are growing by over 50% and we hope to continue this growth trajectory. We hope to see our exports of goods and services to triple from $765 billion to $2 trillion by 2030,” he added.
The Embassy of India, Paris, France, in association with the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), the Mouvement des entreprises de France(MEDEF) and the Indo French Chamber of Commerce and Industry(IFCCI), organised the India – France Business Summit and CEOs Roundtable.
Minister Delegate for Foreign Trade, Economic Attractiveness and French Nationals Abroad, Government of France, Mr Olivier Becht shared that he is confident that both sides will foster bilateral & multilateral meetings. “India being the world’s most populous country has the potential to attract numerous manufacturing activities, already, many French companies are actively engaged in India, and there is tremendous untapped potential for further collaboration”, he said.
Vice-President, CII and Chairman & Managing Director, ITC Limited, Mr Sanjiv Puri shared that the presence of a large delegation from the CII in France underscores the significant importance that India attaches to its relationship with France.
DG CII, Mr Chandrajit Banerjee highlighted that India and France are committed to collaborative engagement in areas like innovation, financial inclusion, ESG in businesses, and deepening global engagement towards Africa.
Sessions were held on ‘Building a green future’; Critical and Emerging Technologies: The New Strategic Frontier; ‘Defence Cooperation: Securing a Shared Future Through Atmanirbhar Bharat’ and France and India: Springboard to Europe and Indo-Pacific.
Builiding a Green Future
Both India and France attach the highest importance to building a green future. Both countries have ambitious climate goals. Building a green future creates enormous market opportunities, but it also requires huge investments and technological breakthroughs. In recent years, there has been significant increase in investments, collaborations and joint ventures, especially from France to India, in “green technologies”. The Session brought out ways on how businesses could tap opportunities in green transition; discussed new technologies in various areas – renewable energy, mobility, buildings, infrastructure, construction, energy efficiency, industrial processes, agriculture. The Session was moderated by the Head of AFD Activities in Eastern Europe – Middle East and Asia, Mr Cyrille Bellier.
Critical and Emerging Technologies: The New Strategic Frontier
Collaboration and competition are growing around critical and emerging technologies, including advanced computing, communications and networking technology, advanced materials, engine technology, space technologies and systems, sensors, renewable energy technology, semiconductors and microelectronics, directed energy, hypersonics, etc.
As two countries with strong belief in sovereignty and strategic autonomy, the Session highlighted ways on how India and France can enhance their cooperation in critical and emerging technologies; complementarities between the two countries and opportunities therein; recommendations on increasing India-France Technology Cooperation. The Session was moderated by the Ambassador for Digital Affairs, Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs, Mr Henri Verdier.
Defence Cooperation: Securing a Shared Future Through Atmanirbhar Bharat
The evolving geopolitics, including the growing challenges in the Indo Pacific region, and emergence of contests in new domains such as Space and cyberspace, have further increased the salience of this partnership. France has been a longstanding and an increasingly important source of defence platforms, equipment and technology for India. The Session brought out how we go beyond assembly and also develop and design defence technologies; specific defence platforms and equipment where we see maximum potential for India-France partnership. The Session was moderated by DG, CII, Mr Chandrajit Banerjee.
France and India: Springboard to Europe and Indo-Pacific
In the past three years, France has been ranked the most attractive investment destination in the EU, which is also reflected in the rising foreign investment figures. While India is among the leading Asian sources of investments in France, the value of investments is small and concentrated in a few sectors. Indian companies are reviewing their European strategy in the context of the post-Brexit EU. France could be the next big destination for Indian investments. Since generating a part of the value in the market is important for success, the Session shed light on how can Indian companies invest more in France to cater to India’s largest destination for exports, the EU; and on how markets can be accessed. The Session was chaired by President, FIEO, Mr A Sakthivel.
More than 50 CEOs from Indian and French companies participated at the CEOs Roundtable which was addressed by Union Minister of Commerce & Industry, Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution and Textiles, Shri Piyush Goyal and the Minister Delegate for Foreign Trade, Economic Attractiveness and French Nationals Abroad, Government of France, Mr Olivier Becht. Sectors such as agriculture, tourism, defence, manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, textiles, aerospace were represented at the Roundtable. Along with the Ministers, perspectives were shared by Ambassador of India to France, Mr. Jawed Ashraf, Vice-President, CII and Chairman & Managing Director, ITC Limited, Mr Sanjiv Puri, DG, CII, Mr Chandrajit Banerjee, Executive Director, International Energy Agency, Mr Faith Birol and CEO, Danone, Mr Antoine de Saint-Affrique. Other CEOs participated in a discussion with Shri Goyal as well.