New Delhi: President of Seychelles Danny Faure invited Indian business and investors to explore investment opportunities available in Seychelles. He was speaking at the Business Session jointly organised by FICCI, CII and ASSOCHAM in New Delhi.
“Our potential is not in mass producing goods to supply to the world, it lies in the specialist area of resources in the sea. We have exclusive economic zone of 1.4 million sq. kms and with 150 islands in our archipelago, a large number of outer islands lie idle. There are opportunities for tourism, fisheries, agriculture and more. Outer islands provide new opportunities and yet remain unexplored,” he said.
He added that fiscal discipline in the country has helped to reduce the debts and grow at a faster pace. “The economic reforms started in 2008. Fiscal discipline and some management has allowed us to reduce our debts,” he said.
“Invest in any sector you want and use the physical beauty of Seychelles to set up famous Bollywood industry. We will make your investment project a functioning enterprise,” said Mr. Faure.
On tourism, he said that India is still a growing market. “This space is largely occupied by European countries and the UAE. Mumbai is only four hours away by direct flight. We can grow the market,” he added.
R K Singh, Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Power and New & Renewable Energy, Govt. of India in his address highlighted the need to expand the trade ties between the two countries.
“Our relations have been extremely close. However, our trade figures do not reflect the close relations as it should have been. We need to work on trade. We are a huge market and would assist businesses from Seychelles to increase the access to Indian market. We would work for closer relations in all spheres. We would encourage our industries to invest in Seychelles,” he said.
He also elaborated on the opportunities power sector provide in India. “We are expanding. We will need to add more capacity in coming years therefore energy is a good market.”
Oliver Bastienne, President, Seychelles Chamber of Commerce & Industry (SCCI) said, “Trade still heavily remains untapped. Increased commerce between India & Seychelles will only be a win-win proposition for both the nations. We can still do better than that and that is why we want to work with you.”
A G Yakub, Leading Businessman from Seychelles who is part of the business delegation in his address said, “Our main interest is to promote more direct trade links with India aimed at reducing cost of doing business. Our main focus is on quality and affordability at competitive rates.”
He also added that Seychelles can benefit from concessions bestowed upon other nations. He urged Indian government to grant Seychelles a food-security guarantee.
Ramesh Mutha, Senior Executive Committee Member, FICCI and MD, Mohan Mutha Group said, “The scope for furthering Seychelles engagement with India holds tremendous potential and offers a unique opportunity to the industry to surge on a path of co-development with their regional counterparts.”
Sanjay Singh, Member, CII & Advisor, Tata Sons Ltd. in his welcome address said, “Though the economic and commercial cooperation between India and Seychelles is small at the moment, there exists significant scope for enhancement, especially in Renewable Energy, Innovation & Infrastructure, Sustainable Cities and Communities, Hospitality, Tourism, Fisheries and Financial products companies.”
S C Aggarwal, Senior Managing Committee Member, ASSOCHAM and Chairman, SMC Group in his address added, “India-Seychelles business relationship needs to be refreshed at all levels. Businesses from both the sides need to have a creative approach towards changing the current mind-set and explore business opportunities to its best potentials.”