India and the countries of the Europe 29 region are beacons of growth in a slowing world. This was stated by Mr. Piyush Goyal, Minister of Commerce & Industry and Railways at the India – Europe 29 Business Forum has been organized by the Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India and Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) in New Delhi today. The Europe 29 (E29) region refers to the 29 countries in Central, Eastern and Northern Europe.Commerce and Industry Minister said that India and Europe have very strong historical and cultural connect and can capitalize on this to develop strong economic partnership. Both India and Europe have complementary strengths especially in areas such as smart cities, renewable energy, start-ups IT and ITeS stated the Commerce and Industry Minister. In addition to this, he suggested that promotion of bilateral tourism may be considered as a major area of cooperation. Piyush Goyal was of the view that the E29 region could act as a gateway for Indian products to the wider European market.On this occasion, Ms. Mariyana Nikolova, Deputy Prime Minister for Economic and Demographic Policy, Bulgaria invited Indian industry to invest in Bulgaria.
She stated that Bulgaria has a predictable and stable policy framework as well as one of the lowest tax rates in Europe at 10% for corporates. She informed that the areas where India and Bulgaria can work together include pharmaceuticals, chemicals, machinery and agri and food processing, among others. She also highlighted Bulgaria’s strengths in both hardware and software where Indian companies could be an ideal partner.Mr. Vojtecj Ferencz, State Secretary and First Deputy Minister of Economy, Slovak Republic highlighted that companies like TCS and Jaguar Land Rover had invested in the country, and there was a need to step up Indian investment. Some of the sectors which may be considered are automobiles and auto components, electronics and electrical equipment.Secretary, Ministry of External Affairs, T S Tirumurti, in his address said that the economies of the two regions were complementary. He invited the E29 economies to boost cooperation with India. The India - Europe 29 Business Forum will act as a bridge and help close the geographical and knowledge gap between the two regions, he said.Senior officials of Ministries of Commerce and Industry, External Affairs, CII and captains of industry were present on this occasion.