Consulate General of India, Birmingham & University of Leicester organized a ‘Make in India’, business seminar at the College Court Conference Centre of University of Leicester on 6th of November, 2017.This is a part of the week long series being organized by Consulate General of India in 7 prestigious institutions of Midlands and North England. Prominent members of the business community, civic leaders, members of Chambers of Commerce, Leicester Asian Business Association, members of Council, and senior managers / representative of companies from an array of sectors attended the event.
Consul General, Dr. Aman Puri, welcomed the gathering and mentioned that there are 800 Indian companies operating in the UK, employing 110,000 people, with combined revenues of 47.5 billion pounds. He also added that the single largest employer in the UK, in the manufacturing sector, is Tata’s India’s largest conglomerate. He mentioned that the British Businesses especially the SME’S must study the opportunity in India, and explore the first hand developments happening there to develop their India business plan.
Mr. Vivek Abraham, Assistant Vice President from Invest India (which is the official investment promotion and facilitation agent of Government of India, mandated to facilitate investments into India), who came specially for this programme from India gave a highly informative and interesting presentation called ‘Transformation India’. Amongst other things he highlighted the bright prospects for potential investors in the future years, in India. He mentioned the various initiatives taken by the Government of India specially in the past 3 years like the Digital India, Skill India etc.
On the subject of digital India he mentioned the interesting fact that India is now the 2nd largest Nation ‘on internet,’ at the same time it is the largest Nation which is still ‘not’ on the internet, thereby implying the untapped potential in this sector. He also mentioned about the Prime Minister’s ‘Public Wealth Scheme’ ‘Jan Dhan Yojna’ under which no frills basic bank account has been provided to a large section of the population. Talking on the subject of taxes, where a trader in India had to pay multiple taxes on goods moving from one state of the country to another, and had to go through several state border checkposts thereby causing tremendous delays. With the introduction of GST recently, all these check posts have now been removed ensuring free and speedy movement across the country.
In her address Professor Sarah Dixon, Pro. Vice Chancellor International, University of Leicester, commented that the statistics on Indian Economy and the opportunities in India are phenomenal. She also said that University of Leicester is looking forward to invest in India, and open a campus in India, with an Indian partner. She informed the gathering that University of Leicester has collaborated with the Indian Space Research Programme, with IIT, The Energy and Resources Institutes(TERI), Delhi, National Institute of Technology (Trichy). She indicated that Leicester University can provide marketing and business guidance services to British businesses(SME’s) to Access India.
In his presentation, Mr. Saikat Sen Sharma, Counsellor, (Economic), High Commission of India, London, focused on Access India Programme (AIP), a flagship programme of High Commission of India to provide hand holding services to British SME’s. He also mentioned about the Make in India programme of the Government of India where focused opportunities in 25 broad sectors are available. British SME’s were encouraged to visit the website www.accessindia.co.uk and apply in the AIP.
The presentation segment of the programme was followed by a Question & Answer session, and panel discussion where participants from the audience raised relevant issues which were clarified by the panelists comprising of Mr. Vivek Abraham, Mr. Saikat Sen Sharma, Professor Sarah Dixon and Dr. Aman Puri.
The event was attended by nearly 60 participants. During post event informal session, the participants suggested that more of such events may be planned in future for facilitating British businesses in undertaking the opportunities available in India.