Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Chennai seminar and talk on business with latin America 24-25 sept

CII Chennai office invited me to give a talk to the Chennai Chapter of the " Young Indians" at their impressive new building on 24 sept. I gave a general talk about the competitive advantage of young Indians in this fast changing globalising world in this Age of Information and Era of Knowledge Society. I spoke about how the new mindest of the young Indians has transformed Indian economy and society and raised the image of India and Indians. Halfway through my speech, the Young Indians stopped me and said" we want to know about business opportunities in Latin America". I was pleasantly surprised by their interest and also by the specific questions they had on investment opportunities. They are planning to visit Brazil and I invited them to come to Argentina also.
seated from left- Dr Ravichandran, Canela, Balasubramanyam president SICCI, Ramasundaram MD, TIDCO, Mutha of EEPC, Muthukumaran Eximbank,Sarkar from Bank of Baroda and Luis from Mexico.
I was the chief guest and keynote speaker at the Seminar on Business with Latin America on 25 sept at GRT Grand Hotel, Chennai. The event was jointly organised by EEPC, Indo-LAC Chamber of commerce and Southern India Chamber of Commerce. I was joined by Canela of the Dominican Republic Embassy and Luis Gerardo of Mexican Embassy.
I spoke about the success stories of Indian business entry in less well known countries such as Bolivia, Ecuador, Peru, Uruguay, Paraguay and Guatemala. I highlighted the fundamental change in the market and mindset of Latin America, which is favourable for Indian business.
Clearly, the interest in latin America has grown significantly as i could see from the enthusiasm shown by the participants. Ganesan of EEPC ,who took a delegation to Argentina recently, spoke about the interest shown by Argentines in sourcing engineering goods from India.
Dr Ravichandran, president of the Indo-Lac Chamber is going to do a post-doctoral research in the topic of India-latin america trade and investment. The first post-doc research in this topic ! Congrats Dr Ravi !

Sunday, September 16, 2007

CII is also passionate about Latin America

Gunveena Chadha on the left. DG,CII Mr Mehta speaking

Ambassador of Argentina extreme right, the new JS(LAC) Ravi Thapar, Ambassador of Suriname and DG, CII, Mr Mehta

In my speech at the lunch hosted by the Confederation of Indian Industry on 13 September, I expressed thanks to the proactive role played by them in promoting business with Latin America. It has been a pleasant and rewarding experience for me to have worked with the committed and competent young professional executives of CII.
Hmm .. it is more than that. These executives have also displayed a passion for my querida america latina. It started with Subha, who visited Latin America in 1997 and came to Sao Paulo when I was there. I took her to a samba school .. caramba ! she danced like a mulatta ! Although she no longer deals with the region she has retained her passion and attends Latin America meetings, asking me to quote latino poems, being a poet herself. Then came Indrani, La Reina da Salsa ( the salsa queen), who organised many business events and arranged exchanges of delegations. She created history in CII by making it a party to partying at the night clubs " Just my kind of place " and " F- Bar" where CII co-hosted the salsa parties for the launching of my book on latin america and later my website.
And now we have Gunveena, who has started greeting in spanish and is becoming younger by 5 years after her each trip to latin america. She has developed a passion for Latin America and is very enthusiastic in promoting business with the region. She has taken delegations to countries such as Ecuador and Bolivia, the first-ever business delegations from India.
I should also pay tribute to Vidya and Deepa, the two sweet ladies who have been working at the backend quietly but efficiently to make every event a success. They remind me of the poem " Quisera oir tu silencio.. quisera callar mis palabras" ( I want to listen to your silence and silence my words ). And of course, Mr Mehta, the DG of CII and the charming Supriya have been supportive of latin America activities. They were always willing to host meetings for the Latin American delegations, even at short notice.
In June 2007, CII organised the first ever Indo- Latin American Business Conclave in Delhi. They are going to do the second edition in Sao Paulo in December 2007.