ECONOMY

New prospects in business partnerships with India to be consolidated in June

An Indian business delegation is scheduled to visit Athens in June to follow up discussions on trade and investment deals initiated with Greek counterparts in New Delhi. Indian businessmen «are interested in the setting up of joint ventures, which will be active either in India or in the European Union. They are particularly interested in infrastructure projects,» Economy Minister Giorgos Alogoskoufis, who headed the Greek delegation to the Indian capital last week, told a press briefing on the results of the visit. Indian firms are strongly interested in pursuing initial contacts with Greek construction companies with a view to garnering a share of the pie in their country’s huge utility and infrastructure projects, including airports. They would also like to see Greek tourism firms invest in India. Following the Greek visit, two agreements are in the final stretch, one for the avoidance of double taxation and another regarding the security of investments. Indian and Greek businesspeople took part in more than 300 meetings, chiefly regarding the sectors of foodstuffs, beverages, construction materials and cosmetics. «Indian enterprises are interested in becoming importers and representatives of Greek firms and products. This is very important for us, to develop a distribution network in this vast market,» said Alogoskoufis. The Hellenic External Trade Board (HEPO) has planned Greek participation at the international fair for construction materials (ICON) in New Delhi on May 3-5, 2007, and will be sending a business delegation to Mumbai in November and participating in the International Food Exhibition, IFE India, on December 6-8.