India, Bahrain seek to enhance business ties

New Delhi, Sept. 28 (ANI): The first meeting of India-Bahrain Joint Business Council aimed at upgrading the business ties between both the countries was held at the FICCI Federation House today.

The event was organized by FICCI in association with Bahrain Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

The event seeks to establish a platform that will give crucial feedback to the respective governments to frame policies that will be conducive to enhancing trade and investment between the two nations.

Charge de Affaires of Bahrain Embassy, Maram Saleh, said there was a need to work towards deepening cooperation between India and Bahrain.

She urged the Indian investors to explore the myriad areas open for investment in Bahrain and called upon members of the Bahrain Chamber of Commerce to invest in India as the country offered great investment opportunities and had a high return of investment.

Director for Geo-Economics and Strategy at International Institute for Strategic Studies, Dr. Sanjaya Baru, said that since India was a country with regional contrasts, the investors’ experience would differ from state to state.

He said that it was important for investors to deal with state governments to set up their business, adding that it may initially appear difficult to do business in India owing to various impediments but the high return of investment would make the effort worthwhile.

Consular at Economic Development Board of Bahrain, Yousef A Khan, said said that Bahrain offered a favorable tax regime with no ‘free zone’ restrictions and 100 percent ownership to the investors. He added that Bahrain was a hub and investors could set up their business in the country to access the whole region, which was connected well with major Gulf countries and beyond.

Chairman of Bahrain-India Joint Business Council (Bahrain side), Khaled Al Amin, said that India and Bahrain needed to have closer business ties. Taxation, he said, was posing as a challenge in this relationship and there was a need to pressurize the government to resolve the issue for unhindered growth of business between the two countries.

Chairman of India-Bahrain Joint Business Council (Indian side), Nitin Joshi, said that Indo-Bahrain bilateral trade currently (2013-2014) stood at USD 1.2 billion; a spectacular jump from merely USD 220 million in 1999-2000.

He added that for trade and investment cooperation various areas like agriculture, infrastructure, healthcare, medical tourism, real estate and pharmaceuticals, were being explored.

Meanwhile, Managing Director of Invest India on Investment Opportunities, Deepak Bagla, said that Invest India is a joint venture company between Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion under Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Government of India, Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) and various state governments. It was responsible for promoting and facilitating investments to India.

Invest India is the first reference point for investors and acts as a facilitator and partner offering handholding services to the investors to help them frame their investment plans. (ANI)

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