Saturday, January 28

Bengal rules in India-S’pore CEO meet

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There will be a strong presence of Bengal in the Singapore-India CEOs’ Forum on Wednesday in the back drop of the visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi in this island nation for the second time. Modi will be attending the 13th East Asia Summit there.
Conceived as a bilateral consultation mechanism by the SBF (Singapore Business Federation), Singapore’s apex business chamber and the Federation of Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FICCI), the Singapore-India CEO Forum will bring together the top business leaders of both nations, with existing and potential interests in the respective market. Three people from Bengal or of Bengal origin would be seen to play a key role in this forum.

The Singapore co-chair for the forum is Gautam Banerjee, chairman for South Asia Business Group (SABG), Singapore Business Federation and chairman and senior MD, Blackstone Singapore. Apart from Banerjee, the forum also includes Prasoon Mukherjee, vice-chairman for the SABG, vice-chairman for the Singapore Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Sicci) and chairman of the Universal Success Group of companies in India and southeast Asia.

From the India side, the delegation will be led by Harshvardhan Neotia, past president Ficci and chairman, Ambuja Neotia Group. When contacted, Neotia confirmed the development. A source close to the development said that with a strong presence of Bengal, the state can be benefited from the forum, which will focus on specific opportunities between India and Singapore, namely, infrastructure and energy, advance manufacturing, education, services (IT/ITes), financial technology and healthcare. It will also seek to address concerns raised by companies from both countries with regards to the Singapore-India Tax Treaty as well as mechanisms to enhance the physical connectivity between Singapore and Indian cities.

When contacted, Banerjee said the Singapore Business Federation (SBF) and The Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (Ficci) will be establishing this CEOs’ Forum as a bilateral consultation mechanism. Its job will be to discuss issues of mutual interest, particularly ways to strengthen commercial ties and overcome business impediments between the two countries, and issue joint recommendations to the Indian and Singapore governments. “Singapore companies have recognized the opportunities in India, as one of the largest economies and markets in Asia,” he added.

Speaking on the occasion, Mukherjee, who is also a member of the steering committee for the forum, said. “This is a first-of-its-kind initiative by the premier business chambers of both countries to bring on one table, the top industrialists and businessmen. This forum will go a long way in increasing collaborative measures in commerce and industry in both countries.”

Source: Times of India

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