DELEGATION LED BY FINANCE MINISTER SHOWCASES PUNJAB AS MOST PREFERRED INVESTMENT DESTINATION
A high level delegation from Punjab led by Finance Minister Manpreet Singh Badal participated in the World Economic Forum, DAVOS to showcase Punjab as the most preferred investment destination due to its investor friendly policies coupled with lucrative incentives.
The Finance Minister was accompanied by the Additional Chief Secretary Industries and Commerce Vini Mahajan and CEO Invest Punjab Rajat Agarwal had several rounds of discussions with prospective investors from across the globe to invest in Punjab. Manpreet Badal assured the investors and entrepreneurs, who were keen to make investments of fulsome support and cooperation by the Punjab Government.
As part of the visit, the Finance Minister attended WEF’s welcome reception on 21st January evening at Congress Centre, Davos and met Dubai-based Lulu Group’s Chairman Yusuff Ali on the sidelines. Lulu group had earlier in December expressed keen interest to start its venture in Punjab through an integrated project in Mohali. Finance Minister at Davos assured Yusuff Ali of support and excellent infrastructure from the Punjab Government.
On 22ND January, the delegation participated as part of “Industry 4.0” session organized by CII. This was followed by a roundtable discussion on “Developing an Export Economy for MSMEs in India” co-hosted by Invest India and PayPal, where the Finance Minister opined on creating a strategy and roadmap from industry and government cooperation to increase MSME exports. Secretary, Industrial Policy & Promotion Ramesh Abhishek, Managing Director Invest India Deepak Bagla, CEO PayPal Dan Schulman and leaders from other Global and Indian business houses also participated in the discussion.
The Finance Minister shared dais alongside Lokesh Nara (Andhra Pradesh’s IT Minister) , Amitabh Kant (CEO Niti Aayog) and Ramesh Abhishek (Secretary, Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion) as part of “Country Strategy Dialogue on India” moderated by Gita Gopinath, Chief Economist, International Monetary Fund (IMF). The session saw tremendous interest and was a great platform for sharing Punjab’s views on strategic priorities for India.
As part of session on “Food Systems Action Platform”, the Finance Minister shared his views with the global community on a new vision for Agriculture and Food Safety. At the session, discussions were centered around cross cutting food system action initiatives such as resilience, nutrition, finance etc. required to formulate a consolidated action platform for ensuring food security in the world.
The delegation had fruitful meetings with Global Business and Political leaders including S. Iswaran (Minister of Communications and Information, Government of Singapore), M. Suran Suranjan (President, Procter and Gamble – Asia Pacific, India, Middle East and Africa), Mike Clayville (VP, Commercial Sector at Amazon Web Services) and Rakesh Bharti Mittal (Vice-Chairman, Bharti Enterprises).
The meeting with S. Iswaran was focused around enhancing infrastructure facilities in Punjab. He agreed to help engage Singaporean government-owned infrastructure consultancy company, Surbana Jurong for Urban Planning initiative of Government of Punjab.
Discussions with Procter and Gamble were focused around prioritizing Punjab for their agri-procurement, install manufacturing facility to cater enhancing demand in North India. Options were also explored into creating state-of-the-art R&D center for their recent foray into smart electronic consumer products. Amazon Web Services is looking to train thousands of youth in India in Cloud related technologies. Area of mutual cooperation in technology skill development and Startup incubation Centre were explored. Mr. Rakesh Bharti Mittal along with Punjab delegation discussed collaboration avenues in the area of telecom, agri-business, financial services, retail and communication.
Over the next few days, the Punjab delegation shall continue to leverage the WEF platform to engage in one-on-one meetings with global business leaders and shall also be sharing its views and thoughts on topics of worldwide relevance.