Wenceslaus Anthony –
We salute India with more than a billion people, as the world’s largest democracy.
We also salute the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
It is a moment of great pride for the India New Zealand Business Council (INZBC) to promote ‘Make in India Week’ as the premier organisation that promotes business and trade between India and New Zealand.
Editor’s Note: ‘Make in India Week’ was held in Mumbai from February 13 to 18, 2016.
New Zealand wants to be a part of Mr Modi’s vision of ‘Make in India.’
He said to the world, “I can assure you that once you decide to be in India, we are confident that we can make you comfortable.”
He said that the Indian government was doing its part to clean up corruption.
“I assure that India is now a changed country. Our regulatory regime is much more transparent, responsive and stable. We are taking a long-term and futuristic view on the issues,” Mr Modi had said.
The Indian government, with various ministries and delegations visiting New Zealand and the Indian High Commission working with commitment are examples of the desire to enhance the relationship of trade and business between the two countries.
INZBC was an integral part of the events held in connection with the visit of a delegation of Members of Indian Parliament representing various parties led by Minister of State (independent Charge) Skill Development and Entrepreneurship Rajiv Pratap Rudy in June 2015.
INZBC has the support of Prime Minister John Key, ministers of the Crown and NZTE Chief Executive Peter Chrisp, while Trade Commissioners, officials of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs & Trade (MFAT) work closely with us.
We are in constant communication with the New Zealand High Commissioner Grahame Morton.
INZBC is a 26-year-old democratic organisation, which not only has Memoranda of Understanding (MoU) with various organisations but also demonstrates its commitment. Our MoUs are not ‘Paper Agreements’ for cosmetic reason.
INZBC is restoring some of its very important ingredients of transparency and working cohesively throughout New Zealand.
Hence, it is reviving its Chapters in Christchurch and Wellington with local Chapter Heads. There is request from the Waikato Region to open a Chapter, which will be considered seriously by the Executive Committee, the decision-making body. We need to have minimum member of members to open a meaningful chapter.
Following an agreement, NZTE and MFAT officials will attend our Executive Committee meetings and all of us are working towards a common goal and unity of purpose. This was a great tradition which was discontinued for some reason but the good news is that it is now being restored.
INZBC Annual General Meeting and Elections are due to be held in June 2016.
As someone said, “India is a country with a large, young population. If these young people are well trained, skilled, focused and inspired, India will be a miracle. India is a nation of people, not only land. India needs money, materials and skills from other countries.”
In order to achieve these, India needs to have in place simple, straight and enforceable laws. If laws are not enforceable, where can a person go for justice? The nation will lose control.
Mr Modi is doing everything possible and as he said, “India is now ready for business. You must be sensing the winds of change in India. I only advise to you to come and feel the same. I assure you of my personal attention for your success.”
Mr Key has also expressed New Zealand’s commitment towards India, when he said, “I believe that we can build an enduring and successful partnership with India that will bring in huge rewards for both our countries.”
Wenceslaus Anthony is former Chairman of India New Zealand Business Council and its current Executive Committee Member in charge of Government Relations. The above is an edited version of his speech at a meeting of the Council held at Westpac Headquarters in Auckland on February 11, 2016 (reported in our February 15, 2016 issue) to promote the ‘Make in India Week’ in India. Indian High Commission Charge de Affaires Sandeep Sood was the main speaker at the event. Other speakers included National MP Kanwaljit Singh Bakshi, New Zealand Consular General and Dubai based New Zealand Trade & Enterprise Regional Director (India, Middle East and Africa) Clayton Kimpton and INZBC Treasurer Bhav Dhillon.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi releasing a book on ‘Make in India Week’ with Commerce & Industry Minister Nirmala Sitharaman and Industrial Policy and Promotion Department Secretary Amitabh Kant in Mumbai on February 13, 2016. (Picture Courtesy: Press Information Bureau, Government of India)