India, the Netherlands to expand economic ties

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New Delhi, Nov 20 (UNI) The Netherlands' Minister for Foreign Trade, Frank Heemskerk, will arrive here on November 24 heading a high-level delegation to explore ways for strengthening economic ties between India and the Netherlands.

The visit from November 24-30 is taking place in collaboration with the five major cities of The Netherlands --Amsterdam, Rotterdam, The Hague, Utrecht and Eindhoven.

The visit of the Dutch delegation takes place barely a month after Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands visited India.

During her visit, the two countries signed agreements/Memoranda of Understanding (MOUs) for strengthening cooperation between the two countrries in the field of culture.

The Minister will be accompanied by representatives from 70 enterprises and 13 educational institutions. Besides, those representing international businesses, the delegation also includes a large number of entrepreneurs from small and medium enterprises. The business mission will be led by Mr Loek Hermans, Chairman of The Netherlands' Federation for SME's.

''The main objectives of the economic mission are to strengthen economic ties between the Netherlands and India, to find good cooperative partners and promote the Netherlands as a suitable country for Indian companies to set up business,'' the Netherlands embassy said here today.

Besides, Dutch companies can promote their expertise, especially in areas of IT, bio-technology, infrastructure /logistics and medical sector.

During the visit, the Dutch enterprises and educational institutions will be networking with potential Indian partners.

Minister Heemskerk will also visit Bangalore and Mumbai.

Part of the delegation will visit Hyderabad and Chennai.

The Netherlands Minister will hold meeting with Finance Minister P Chidambaram, Commerce and Industry Minister Kamal Nath, Science and Technology Minister Kapil Sibal and Communications and Information Technology Minister A Raja.

The Netherlands Queen who was in India from October 22-27, was accompanied by Prince of Orange and Princess Maxima and Foreign Minister Maxime Verhagen.

She was also accompanied by an economic mission led by Minister of Economic Affairs Mrs Van Der Hoeven and CEOs of top Dutch companies.

Queen Beatrix was visiting India after twenty-one years--first visit as Queen being in January 1986.

Contacts between India and the Netherlands go back several centuries. Areas of common interest include transport and logistics infrastructure, water management, environment, agriculture and food processing, services and technology.

Bilateral trade doubled in the last five years reaching 2.771 Billion dollars in 2006.

The Netherlands is the fourth largest investor in India with the cumulative investment figure reaching 2.8 Billion dollars during the period August 1991--June 2007.

UNI

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