A delegation of Bahrain Economic Development Board (BEDB) is in India seeking investments for the oil-rich kingdom in sectors like tourism, start-ups, financial services, information technology and manufacturing.
“Tourism is the most important industry for the start of business links with India’s hotel operators, while the financial services and information technology start up sector fits well for Indian companies, especially those engaged in the digital payment business,” BEDB Managing Director Simon Galpin said.
“Bahrain is very keen to develop economic relationship with India. We have many government-funded infrastructure projects that could present opportunities for Indian engineering companies, such as upgrading oil and gas companies, expanding our airport by 40 per cent and a new light-rail system,” he added.
Realising the importance of non-oil sectors and foreign direct investment as essential components of economic diversification, Bahrain has stepped its campaign for foreign trade and investment, stressing its role as the gateway for the six nation Gulf Cooperation council (GCC).
“Bahrain’s prime assets are its strategic geographical location in the Middle East, low labour costs, diversified industries and an open economy that offer a favourable business environment for Indian companies.
“It is connected to Saudi Arabia by a 25-kilometer causeway, which only needs 30 minutes drive, so many companies use Bahrain as a gateway for access to Saudi Arabia and the GCC countries,” said David Parker, Executive Director, Financial Services, BEDB.
The government of Bahrain is also keen that local high net worth individuals, angel investors and serial entrepreneurs become active investors in startups in India that wish to set up shop there and get access to other markets in the region.
The Bahrain Economic Development Board is a public agency with overall responsibility for attracting investment into the Kingdom and supporting initiatives that enhance the investment climate.