Hungary to boost bilateral trade with India to 500 m euros

Written by ASHOK B SHARMA | New Delhi, Jan 18 | Updated: Jan 19 2008, 02:26am hrs
Hungary has called for easing visa regime and allowing resident permits for boosting bilateral trade and investment. It has also proposed to increase the bilateral trade with India from the existing 300 million Euros to 500 million Euros.

Speaking at a business meeting organized jointly by the apex Indian industry bodies FICCI, CII and Assocham and the Hungarian industry body ITD here on Friday, the visiting Hungarian Prime Minister, Ferenc Gyurcsany said : "our government is focusing on providing better and credible regulations with no political obstacles to enhance the investment from Indian companies and to facilitate the growth of industry. India is a very reliable partner for Hungary because of skilled and reliable employers and investors."

He said the Hungarian government would provides various incentives to Indian companies to enhance the investment in R&D; subsidy for employment creation and training; development tax benefit and the tailor- made incentive package for strategic investors.

Gyurcsany suggested easing visa regime between India and Hungary and allowing resident permits.

The secretary in the Hungarian ministry for international economic affairs and transport, . Abel Garamhegyi, State Secretary, MET, Hungary said "our focus is to increase the bilateral trade from 300 million euro to 500 million euro. We seek investment in R&D, innovation, high added value, knowledge based economy, healthcare and defence sector,"

He added that Hungarian government will provide the customized incentive package to strategic investors for the 10 million EUR investment in terms of cash subsidy; development tax allowance and training subsidy.

The Indian minister of state for external affairs said that liberal policy of the Hungarian government was investor friendly. He said, agro processing and tourism were areas in which both the countries can cooperate. To further strengthen the bilateral relations, the Indian government was seeking investment in sector such as tourism, infrastructure, and biotechnology.

Phiroz Vandrevala, Member, CII national council and executive director and head of the global corporate affairs in Tata Consultancy Services suggested measures to promote bilateral economic cooperation in education, healthcare, biotechnology, IT and other services and joint ventures in infrastructure projects.

P K Sandell, chairman, Assocham computers and electronic committee said that India- Hungary bilateral trade last year has been to the tune of $ 150 million only. This was far below the level of our good relations. This needs to be increased he said and added "I urge the distinguished members of your delegation to actively interact with the Indian business persons to find means and ways to increase the trade, and explore fresh avenues and opportunities for more intense economic interaction"

Onkar S Kanwar, former president of FICCI said "India sees Hungary as not only the gateway to Europe but the most effective window of engaging 27 countries of Europe. Hungary's liberalization and globalization process has become a benchmark for may countries in the world.."