Remarks by External Affairs Minister at the release of the book ‘Indian Super 100’, in Dubai

I am really delighted to release the book ‘The Indian Super 100’ for Middle East and North Africa region.

When approached with a request to release this book, I got curious to know about our achievers included in the book. As I flipped through the pages of the book, I found some familiar faces that have for long held the flag of Indian entrepreneurship high beyond the borders of our motherland. I was also happy to see some Public Sector undertakings such as Bank of Baroda and Air India as well as the names of some upcoming entrepreneurs in UAE included in the list. They are indeed making a mark on the world stage keeping in step with the changing economic realities and world order.

I really appreciate the significance of and unique ways in which the organizations represented by The Super 100 have gone about their ‘Corporate Social Responsibilities’ and philanthropic activities. Their efforts towards setting up of schools and hospitals in India apart from some innovative ventures like adoption of villages and creations of self employment schemes are indeed commendable.

I am told that the collective workforce of 'The Super 100’ extends well beyond a million employees both directly and indirectly. Their significance lies in the fact that the employment opportunity, as harbinger of better future, still remains the predominant force behind migration of Indian workforce. On the economic front, these 100 of our fellow countrymen help generate revenues of over 100 billion US dollars and invest significant amounts in ventures back home in India.

Dear friends,

I am amazed to see the spectrum of Indian expatriate community in the Middle East, especially the UAE. Initially, the employment and business opportunities drove traders, businessmen and workers to these off-shore destinations. However, as service sector and knowledge based industry took lead, more and more professionals joined Indian work force in the Middle East. This has resulted in wide but impressive mix within Indian community in terms of professions they are engaged in, their financial well being and social stature.

During my interaction with the Indian Community yesterday, I have already highlighted the priorities and various initiative launched by the new Government for the welfare of Indian expatriate community particularly in the UAE. I have received valuable inputs from our community members. I assure you that your suggestions will be given due consideration.

As today’s gathering is dominated by professionals and members from business community, I urge you to make best use of opportunity offered by the Indian Government in the field of manufacturing, infrastructure and trade. Whether it is Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor project or other industrial corridors, including Chennai –Bengaluru Industrial Corridor, East Coast Industrial Corridor, Amritsar-Kolkata Industrial Corridor and North East-Myanmar Industrial Corridor, opportunities for investment are boundless. Our transparent and stable policies provide a level playing field to both domestic and foreign investors. Easing of foreign investment caps in construction, enhanced FDI caps in railways and defence production are steps intended to overcome some of the implementation bottlenecks. Then there is "Make in India” initiative inviting foreign entrepreneurs to establish manufacturing bases in India.

Before I conclude, I must record my appreciation for the publishers of the book for their painstaking efforts in compiling such a huge amount of information in bringing out this edition of the book. While the current book mainly focuses on entrepreneurs and professionals – prominent members of Indian Diaspora in the UAE, I would suggest you to consider an edition dedicated to those common men and women who I have been told are making selfless contribution in their own right towards the welfare of Indian expatriate community.

I would like to once again congratulate each one of you as members of very vibrant Indian community in the UAE. I treat each one of you as an Ambassador of India. While applauding your sincere efforts in strengthening India- UAE relations, I wish you all a very successful and prosperous future.

Jai Hind.

12.11.2014

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