New Delhi : Leaders of Government and Industry from both sides, called for greater cooperation between India and Canada to promote sustainable industry, at the Annual National Convention of the Indo-Canadian Business Chamber (ICBC), held recently at a city hotel. Shri. R.K. Singh, Hon. Minister for Power, New & Renewable Energy, Government of India, delivered the keynote at the inaugural plenary session of the convention after H.E. Cameron MacKay, High Commissioner for Canada in India, had made the opening remarks followed by a special address by Hon. Victor Fideli, Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation & Trade, Government of Ontario, Canada. High Commissioner of India to Canada, H.E. Sanjay Verma addressed the gathering virtually.
Making a fervent pitch to Canadian companies to invest in the Indian Renewable Energy (RE) space, Shri. Singh referred to a survey by E&Y global which pointed to India being second in tech advancement in the space. He also mentioned that according to a separate credible survey, India was also number one in Climate Action among the world’s largest economies and would continue to remain so.
Shri. Jayesh Ranjan, Principal Secretary to Government, I&C, ITE&C Depts, Government of Telangana, India, while revealing that an updated Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) had been signed between the Government of Telangana and the Government of Ontario on the margins of the ICBC Annual Convention, called for greater cooperation between the two countries in the field of Artificial Intelligence, Start-ups and Electric Mobility in a special Fireside Chat also involving Minister Fideli. Both Shri. Ranjan and Minister Fideli pointed to the shared and exclusive strengths of the two countries in these fields which can be harnessed for mutually beneficial cooperation. Earlier, Hon’ble Telangana Minister for IT and Industries, Shri K T Rama Roa, briefly joined the event virtually.
The Indo-Canada trade corridor is today $100bn strong, including $70bn of Canadian investments into India by pension funds like CDPQ Global and financial holding firms like Fairfax and others. Also today, there are around 1.8 million Indo-Canadians which make Canada the “second most Indian country” in the world after India. Round five of the Early Progress Trade Agreement (EPTA) talks, a prelude to a Free Trade Agreement between the two countries has also just been wrapped up, with round six slated for January 2023 in India. Canada today has around 50 trade commissioners in eight cities of India to further boost bilateral trade in the Indo-Canada corridor.
Among other notable members from the Government of both countries, who participated in the convention were Shri. Ajay Bisaria, Former High Commissioner of India to Canada, Ms. Jennifer Daubeny, Minister (Commercial Affairs), High Commission of Canada in India, Ms. Nandita Gupta, Joint Secretary, Labour and Employment, Govt. of India and Shri. Pawan Kumar Director (Financial Markets & DI), DEA, Ministry of Finance, Government of India.
Leaders of Industry who also aired their views at the convention were Mr. Hari Bhartia, Co-Chairman & Founder, Jubilant Bhartia Group, Mr. Piyush Pattanayak, Managing Director, McCain Foods India Ltd., Mr. Arun Pandeya, Country Head & General Manager (India), Air Canada, Maj. Ranjeet Goswami, Global Head – Corporate Affairs, TATA Consultancy Services, Ms. Padmaja Ruparel, President, Indian Angel Network; Managing Partner, IAN Fund, Mr. Sandeep Goel, President & CEO, ICICI Bank Canada and Mr. Shiv Ranjan, Head of Technology Management & Transformation, Sun Life ASC, among others.
Ms. Nadira Hamid, CEO, ICBC, welcomed the guests while Mr. Rakesh Aerath, President, ICBC, also made opening remarks before the start of the convention.