Mumbai, Sep 12 (IANS) The second annual India-Afghanistan International Trade and Investment Show opened in Mumbai on Wednesday under the aegis of the US Agency for International Development (USAID), India and Afghanistan governments.
The four-day event will showcase Afghan business and investment opportunities and bolster international trade, officials said.
Around 200 Afghan businesses, 1,200 Indian and 100 international business leaders are participating in the event.
On display are the best of Afghan products, services and business opportunities in textiles, carpets, gems and jewellery, luxury goods, agriculture and horticulture, energy, health, education, mining and heavy industry, among others.
A panel discussion was also held about ‘match-making’ opportunities for Afghan, Indian and global businesses.
“The US appreciates India’s important contribution to stability in Afghanistan especially in economic assistance and development. This event helps fulfill commitments our leaders made to the citizens of all three countries,” said US charge d’affaires to India MaryKay Carlson at the inauguration.
Afghanistan’s Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah, Acting Finance Minister Mohammed H. Qayoumi, Chairman of Ghazanfar Group Ismail Ghazanfar, Maharashtra Industries Minister Subhash Desai, and other dignitaries were present on the occasion.
Today’s,theme was on doing business in Afghanistan featuring top businessmen who have invested in that country, besides a cultural show, ‘Afghan Treasures’ highlighting its Silk Road heritage, besides an expo on Afghan grapes at a suburban mall.
During the first event in 2017 in New Delhi, Indian and Afghan businessmen signed contracts totalling over $27 million for raw and processed agricultural products, besides MoUs totalling $214 million, said Afghan Ambassador to India, Shaida M. Abdali.
“Air cargo for Afghan exports is speedy and cost-effective compared with road transport. By 2020, the India-Afghanistan trade is expected to touch more than $2 billion and ‘Passage to Prosperity’ will further advance trade integration,” added Abdali, at a pre-event meet here last month.