Flic en Flac (Mauritius), Oct 27 (IANS) Viewing Mauritius as a gateway to engage the African continent, India organised here a major round table on business, focusing on foreign investments.
The meet, organised by the Indian and Mauritius governments in association with the the Overseas Indian Facilitation Centre (OIFC) Friday, witnessed participation from 250 delegates from both the nations who used the opportunity to connect with the Indian diaspora, Mauritius citizens and others from the African nations looking to invest in businesses.
On the occasion, Mauritius Industry, Commerce and Consumer Protection Minister Cader Sayed Hossen said: "We hope through these business interactions, Mauritius may succeed to transit to the next phase of its economic growth. We value the business acumen and expertise of Indian business leaders who can help Mauritius develop its high technological industries."
Indian Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs Joint Secretary (Diaspora) T.K. Manoj Kumar said: "The Indian community in Mauritius is politically visible, successful, hard working and enterprising. The progress achieved in this round of dialogue with Mauritius has opened opportunities to reach out to other African nations."
"India's global profile has been steadily growing and it is heartening to note that the Indian diaspora in Mauritius extends relentless support in our progress," he said.
The round table had three plenary sessions with over 20 interactions on how the Indian diaspora could engage with India and Mauritius, a gateway to Africa.
The discussions and presentations focused on the enormous opportunities for Indian diaspora to engage with India in health care, financial services and banking, energy, education and many more sectors.
OIFC chief executive officer Sujata Sudarshan said that "the Indian diaspora can play a key role in not only capitalising on economic opportunities in India, but also help build synergies between India and Mauritius and with Mauritius as the gateway to Africa for India."
OIFC endeavours to generate a greater momentum towards a deeper, strengthened and diverse partnership between the two countries by promoting business-to-business meetings between the delegates and the representatives of state governments and industry players from India.
Enterprise Mauritius chief executive officer Dev Chamroo appealed to the businesses from both countries to enter into partnerships and use Mauritius to secure their investments in Africa.
"Investors should not see Mauritius as a landing strip, but rather like a runway to take-off their businesses worldwide. We would like to create joint ventures with Indian partners to reach the wider African market," he said.
Association of Hotels and Restaurants in Mauritius chief executive officer Jocelyn Kwok said that in the last three years, Indian tourist arrivals were on the rise and flights from Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai and Bangalore had helped tap into that market.
"Investment in tourism in Mauritius is significant. The island is definitely growing in the MICE (meeting, incentive, conferences and exhibitions) market, especially for high-end Indian weddings. There is definitely a willingness to grow investment," Kwok said.