Leaders from Nottingham have returned from India feeling positive that the visit will lead to investment and business in the city.
A presentation to the Confederation of Indian Industry Global Summit for Small and Medium Enterprises in the country’s capital, Delhi, highlighted Nottingham’s strengths and potential as a centre for investment and trade and explored mutual business opportunities and collaborations..
Smart City talks in Chandigarh, the capital of Punjab and Haryana, and Jaipur, capital of Rajasthan, followed. Chandigarh is aiming to become one of India’s leading Smart Cities, using information and communication technologies (ICT) to enhance quality, performance and interactivity of urban services, reduce costs and resource consumption and improve contact between citizens and government. Jaipur is in India’s Top 20 Smart Cities programme.
Trading opportunities in the fields of green technology, medical technology, life sciences, IT, infrastructure, renewable energy, housing and real estate, and education and skills development were also explored.
With Nottingham City Council’s Portfolio Holder for Jobs, Growth and Transport, Councillor Nick McDonald, and the Council’s Deputy Chief Executive and Corporate Director of Development and Growth, David Bishop, were representatives from Invest in Nottingham and from industry and commerce in Nottingham They included Nottinghamshire businessman Michael Johal who is originally from Chandigarh and helped arrange meetings with potential investors.
Also part of the delegation were the Vice Chancellor and Pro Vice Chancellor of Nottingham Trent University, Professor Edward Peck and Professor Nigel Healey.
Councillor McDonald said: “While in India we signed a formal agreement with Chandigarh that will promote investment, trade and collaboration between businesses. This will be through delegations from India to Nottingham and information exchanges and will support academic and cultural collaborations between institutions in our two cities including our two universities.
“In Nottingham we have the skills and background to support Chandigarh in its ambition to become a Smart City leader and we will be pursuing collaborative funding proposals and learning from each other’s experiences.
“In Jaipur we expect to finalise a similar Memorandum of Understanding in the New Year to work in partnership on their Smart Cities agenda.
“There is enormous potential for joint working between our cities on the Smart City programme and we were delighted to have this opportunity to highlight Nottingham’s strengths as a world-class investment centre for Indian business and commerce. We have the skills, experience and enterprise in Smart City infrastructure development and our academic specialisms and our location at the heart of the UK, with a strong gateway to trade with Europe, make us a good fit for Indian companies looking to invest, move or expand to the UK and Europe.
“Add to this our large and successful existing Indian business community in Nottingham, who are highly supportive of our growing partnership with India and with Chandigarh and Jaipur in particular. The pace of economic change in India is hugely impressive, and our discussions with our friends in Jaipur and Chandigarh have been very fruitful.
“We are looking forward to welcoming and supporting investors from India into Nottingham while at the same time increasing trade and exports to India from Nottingham to meet the demands from India’s accelerating consumer markets.”
This is the sixth trade delegation between Nottingham and India. Two months ago delegates from India made a third visit to Nottingham bringing representatives from 11 different companies. The visit was a direct result of Nottingham’s relationship and growing links with the British Deputy High Commission and the business community in Chandigarh. Another visit from India to Nottingham is planned In the New year.