H.E. Mr. Ramesh Bais, Hon’ble Governor of Maharashtra inaugurated the 4th edition of World Trade Expo, which is the flagship event of MVIRDC WTC Mumbai to connect Indian industry to the global market.
In his keynote address during inauguration, the Hon’ble Governor remarked, “The World Trade Expo is not just a two-day event; It is a promise of a bright, interconnected future and a bridge for India to the global market. I invite each one of you to maximize the benefits of this Expo, foster partnerships, expand horizons, and collaborate for mutual growth and progress. I congratulate the World Trade Center Mumbai and AIAI and wish for the resounding success of the 'World Trade Expo.”
The Hon’ble Governor further remarked, “I am informed that this 'World Trade Expo' is centered around the themes of 'Trade, Technology, and Tourism.'I understand that, in addition to the exhibition, the next two days will feature knowledge sessions, presentations from various countries, 'Business-to-Business Meets,' and 'Business-to-Government Meets.'I congratulate WTC Mumbai for organizing this splendid 'World Trade Expo’.”
Speaking about the growing prominence of India in the world order, H.E. Mr. Bais pointed out, “India's successful hosting of the G-20 Summit has showcased our country on the world stage. India's scientific achievements, such as the successful soft landing of Chandrayaan 3 on the moon, have also earned recognition globally.Our economic progress and innovation speak volumes about our nation's strength and unwavering resolve. Today, various countries are keen to invest in India, attracted by our thriving market.”
The Governor further said, “Last week, I met the Ambassador of a South American country who told me that their nation has been slow in recognizing India's potential. They mentioned that India is seen in a similar light to how the world used to view China a few years ago. Indeed, India has emerged as a symbol of economic growth and innovation on the global stage.”
The Governor added, “Tourism is becoming an essential component of the global economy. You will be astonished to know that between January 2022 and November 2022, over 180 million Indians travelled abroad, with more than 72 million of them traveling as tourists. This number is continuously increasing.In 2022, there were approximately 1,731 million domestic tourists in India, and nearly 6.19 million foreign tourists visited. These figures are on the rise.”
He added, “India's culture, cuisine, dance, music, yoga, and Ayurveda have already garnered significant interest worldwide. I am confident that in the coming years, various regions of our country will witness a substantial influx of tourists.”
Speaking of Maharashtra, the Governor informed, “We are the most attractive state for investment and collaboration. Maharashtra holds immense potential for tourism development, with several world-class educational institutions. The state boasts mature political leadership eager to boost businesses and industries.”
Hon’ble Governor acknowledged the role of WTC Mumbai in promoting global trade and investment. He said, “It is heartening to note that the establishment of the World Trade Center Mumbai in 1970 was a fulfilment of the dream of Bharat Ratna Sir. Dr. M. Visvesvaraya. Over the past 53 years, the World Trade Center Mumbai has emerged as a premier trade promotion organization in India and is part of the network of 318 World Trade Centers spread across 91 different countries.I extend my congratulations to the World Trade CenterMumbai and the All India Association of Industries for their efforts in maintaining Mumbai's leadership in business and investment.”
In her remarks, Ms. Rita Bahuguna Joshi, Member of Parliament from Uttar Pradesh highlighted the significance of the proposed India Middle East Europe Corridor (IMEEC), which is a key outcome of India’s G20 Presidency. Ms. Joshi informed, “India is a global peacemaker and this corridor will serve as a base for future world trade. This corridor will reduce transit time for Indian goods to middle east and Europe by 40% and save around 15-20% of the country’s cost in communication and connectivity.”
During the inaugural session, Mr. Harjinder Kang, Deputy High Commissioner of British Deputy High Commission informed, “India-UK economic relationship is strong and it will further strengthen in the next 3-4 years of my tenure. FTA negotiation between the two countries is progressing well and our government aims to double bilateral trade by 2030.”
Earlier in his welcome remarks, Dr. Vijay Kalantri, Chairman - MVIRDC World Trade Center Mumbai and President, All India Association of Industries (AIAI) informed, “World Trade Expo is a promising platform for MSMEs, startups, clusters and women entrepreneurs to connect with industry and trade missions of 30 countries and five state governments of India. The last edition of the Expo gave rise to USD 17-18 million new business opportunities for the participating delegates. At this year’s Expo also, we expect fruitful B2B and B2G networking events, that will grow India’s trade, investment and technological partnership with the participating countries,”
Dr. Kalantri further added, “World Trade Expo is an initiative to realise the vision of USD 5 trillion Indian economy by 2027 and USD 40 trillion economy by 2047.”
Dr. Kalantri informed that the Expo will also promote technology as a key enabler for growth of trade, employment and regional growth, including tourism, startups and MSMEs.
Dr. Kalantri highlighted the other progressive initiatives of WTC Mumbai such as the establishment of Center of Excellence for Skill Development, conducting 60 trade events annually and organising Global Economic Summit to connect Indian industry to global market.
Emphasising the importance of skill development for world economy, Dr. Kalantri pointed out, “India has the capacity to supply skilled workers in hospitality, healthcare, engineering, textile designing and other sectors to the world market, which will require 50 million skilled workers in the next few years.”
Dr. Kalantri concluded his remarks by pointing out the importance of capacity building for women entrepreneurs and MSMEs to explore the global market.
Capt. Somesh Batra, Vice Chairman, MVIRDC World Trade Center Mumbai delivered vote of thanks for the event.
World Trade Expo received around 5,000 registrations from delegates representing corporate houses, start-ups, MSMEs and women entrepreneurs.
About World Trade Expo
The two-day Expo will have high impact country presentations, networking sessions, workshops on export strategy, fashion show and exhibition. Nearly 30 countries are participating in this exhibition and India has USD 23 billion untapped export potential to these countries.
India can explore value addition opportunities in natural resource rich countries such as Zambia, Argentina, South Africa, and Ecuador that are participating in the expo. Rapidly growing economies such as Vietnam, Ethiopia and Philippines are also presenting partnership opportunities with Indian industry.
The sectors that hold maximum export potential are pharmaceuticals, automobile, agro and marine products, and Metal products such as Iron and steel, and aluminum.
Industrial States such as Maharashtra, Gujarat and industrialising states such as Madhya Pradesh, Odisha and Rajasthan are showing their industrial policies and economic potential at the two-day event.