Global Indian Business Council (GIBC) launches in Atlanta, woos investors to India
(Photos: Krish Photography)
With a mission to facilitate global economic development with emphasis on India, Global Indian Business Council (GIBC) was launched in the USA on November 22, 2014 in Metro Atlanta with a half-day economic seminar. It will also launch in India on January 10, 2015, as it helps promote the Pravasi Divas 2015 in Gandhi Nagar and Vibrant Gujarat Summit in Gujarat, India.
GIBC is a network of business and technology leaders across the globe based in USA to promote and facilitate greater cooperation in trade and commerce between India, USA, and the rest of the world following the new vision offered by the pragmatic and dynamic leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India.
The seminar was well attended by several distinguished speakers, professionals, corporate executives, and leaders of governments, chambers of commerce, and academics.
Mr. Dhiru Shah, who is President-elect of GIBC, is President of Suraj International, Inc., an alumnus of the London School of Economics and Harvard Business School with 40 plus years of international management and business experience. In his welcoming address, he described the need for GIBC, particularly with the global economy facing severe recessionary trends. Both the European Union and Japan are facing recession and China is slowing down, he said. While the US economy is stable, it is important that massive investments in India from overseas can help stimulate the economy of India. GIBC can become a major player in this.
Dr. Mahesh Mehta, President of GIBC, an expert in Membrane Technology, spoke on GIBC’s mission and objectives. He stated that the Indian election of 2014 has for the first time brought a party to power with a clear majority which in turn has elected a most dynamic and visionary leader, Mr. Narendra Modi, as Prime Minister of India. He felt confident that India will become an economic powerhouse under Modi’s leadership. GIBC with it networking abilities with the Indian government and the state governments, USA, and the rest of the world will be able to provide its (GIBC) services from USA and the rest of the world to set up businesses and industries in India.
Hon. Consul R. Srinvasan of the Indian Consulate–Atlanta, pictured with Aswin Patel (VP, GIBC), spoke at the launch of the Global India Business Council on November 22, 2014. (Krish Photography)
Hon. Consul R. Srinvasan of the Indian Consulate–Atlanta explained the role of the consulate in furthering the economic development of India by offering services to facilitate investment. The Atlanta consulate serves eight US states with about 300,000 NRIs and PIOs. Consul Srinivasan helps US and NRI businesses and companies by providing information relating to the Indian economy and various Indian government economic entities.
Keynote speaker the Hon. Kwanza Hall, Council member of the City of Atlanta, felt that there was a need to invest in small and medium scale industries and business in Georgia, which would generate massive employment for poor African-Americans. He declared that the City would welcome investments from India and the Indian diaspora on a reciprocal basis.
Deputy Consul General for the Consulate of Japan in Atlanta, Hon. Yasukata Fukahori, talked about Japan’s close economic relationship with India. The recent meeting of Prime Ministers of India and Japan has further strengthened the economic ties between the two countries, he said. Japan has a large investment in Georgia even though the number of Japanese living here is very small compared to Indian Americans. There were some hilarious moments when Hon. Fukahori talked about reservations of Japanese speakers to speak beyond the protocol and how the Indian speakers like to continue speaking: he narrated one experience in which the Japanese speaker in India spoke for 5 minutes but the Indian interpreter explained for 30 minutes.
Ms. Andjela Kessler, President of Incentive Travel & Meetings, talked about her company’s success in developing tourism in India and particularly in Gujarat. She spoke about the short Gujarat tourism advertisement videos that engaged Bollywood film stars like Amitabh Bachchan and about her good fortune to interact with then CM Narendra Modi of Gujarat. She pointed out the success of the tourist industry in Thailand and felt that India can also become a major tourist nation if the Indian government and businesses develop basic infrastructure like good hotels, roads, and reliable transportation. At his Madison Square Garden rally in NY on September 27, Prime Minister Modi had made a direct pitch to NRIs to woo tourism for the progress of India.
Describing his company’s relationship with a few Indian companies like Crompton Greaves, Mr. Raj Anand, CEO of Southern States LLC and an alumnus of IIT India, talked about the large pool of qualified engineers and technically trained workers in India who will help the country develop. He hinted that overseas companies operating in India should have some control in the day-to-day operations there. Southern States LLC has successfully introduced ground breaking products such as Load and Line Switchers.
From Etech Global Services, Dallas, Texas, Mr. Charles Woods (left) spoke about the US-India collaborative success in the IT industry. His company has set up two offices in Gujarat employing about 500 people responsible for software development for global operations including USA. Their first office in Gandhinagar was inaugurated by PM Narendra Modi (then Chief Minister of Gujarat). ITech CEO Matt Raco conveyed the message that his company will join hands with GIBC in facilitating investment in India.
Dr. Raghunath Katragadda, Asst. Prof. of Medicine, Div. of Cardiology, Emory Heart & Vascular Center, talked about setting up a hospital chain in Hyderabad to cater to medical tourism from the USA and other countries. India needs top class hospitals, reliable nursing, follow-up care, trained doctors and surgeons, and affordable pricing. Currently, only a few hospitals in India can treat patients from the Western world. He pointed out that countries like Singapore and Thailand are competing with India to attract medical tourists.
Giving a power point presentation on Vibrant Gujarat to be held Jan. 9-11, 2015, Mr. Kanchan Banerjee (left), VP of GIBC, CEO of Ipremm and Editor in Chief of the New Global Indian magazine, urged the audience to join the GIBC delegation to go meet industrialists, the Chief Minister, and bureaucrats of the Gujarat government for signing MOUs in investing. Never before has the business environment been so friendly in Gujarat, he said, “So, take advantage of it!”
Recipient of PBD Samman Award 2013, past President of the Asian American Chamber of Commerce of Georgia, and former Board member of the Georgia Chamber of Commerce, Mr. Subash Razdan, VP of GIBC, gave a brief overview of the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (People of Indian origin), opportunities to invest in India, and encouraged the audience to attend the 2015 event to be held in Gandhi Nagar, Gujarat on Jan. 7-9, 2015, especially so when it is followed by the Vibrant Gujarat Summit (VGS). This year’s PBD will celebrate the centennial of the return of Mahatma Gandhi from South Africa to India.
Also attending were Hon. Greg Pridgeon, former Chief of Staff of City of Atlanta under Mayor Shirley Franklin and key proponent of the Atlanta-Ahmedabad Sister City relationship; Hon. Eric De Groot of Sandy Springs International Economic Affairs and founder of the Holland America Chamber; Wayne Lazarus of the law firm Stokes, Lazarus and Carmichael, who has drafted Articles of Incorporation of many Asian (also Indian) American nonprofit organizations; Mr. Jitu Patel, Chair of the Atlanta-Ahmedabad Sister City Exchange Committee (AASCE); et al. The Sister City proposal for Atlanta-Ahmedabad was approved by public hearing of over 300 attendees by near unanimity, but was shelved due to the economic recession. Fortunately, Mayor Kaseem Reed is looking at it favorably now with the special connection of Gandhi (Ahmedabad) and King (Atlanta).
GIBC Executive committee: Subash Razdan (VP), Vasav Mehta, Narayanan Komerath (VP), Dhiru Shah (President-Elect), Mahesh Mehta (President), Ashwin Patel (VP), Kanchan Banerjee (VP). (Krish Photography)
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Mr. Ashwin Patel, VP of GIBC, Chairman of Apsilon Hotels LLC, Supreme Hospitality Supply LLC, and Alpha Renewable Energy LLC, offered the vote of thanks to the distinguished dignitaries, invited guests, media persons, officials and volunteers and the hospitality of Staybridge Suites staff. He thanked Dr. Narayanan Komerath, Prof. of Aerospace Eng. at GA tech for his design of the GIBC website. He thanked Madhu Tata of Swapna Indian Cuisine for catering an exotic dinner and Sanjay Pandya of Davis Printing.
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