Dutch delegation discusses with K’taka govt; keen to enhance economic cooperation, says Netherlands PM Mark Rutte

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Dutch delegation discusses with K’taka govt; keen to enhance economic cooperation, says Netherlands PM Mark Rutte
Credit: © Reuters.

Bengaluru, Sep 11 (IANS) The Prime Minister of the Netherlands Mark Rutte said on Monday that the Dutch nation is keen to enhance economic cooperation with Karnataka.Speaking at the CEO Round Table Meeting organised at Vidhana Soudha on the occasion of his visit, he stated that the Netherlands aims to provide Dutch companies operating in Karnataka with an opportunity to engage in discussions on strategic matters of mutual interest, focusing on economic growth and investment prospects. The meeting deliberated prominently on investment climate, regulatory and legislative procedures, and collaborations in the areas of agriculture and horticulture among other things.

Mark Rutte stated that Karnataka is home to 9 per cent of Dutch investments in India with a presence of over 25 Dutch companies. Karnataka is also home to Global house Centres of Shell and Philips, he added.

Dy Chief Minister D.K. Shivakumar, Large and Medium Industries Minister M.B. Patil and IT/BT Minister Priyank Kharge were among those who represented the Karnataka government.

Speaking about the meeting, D.K. Shivakumar said, "The Netherlands delegation has discussed several matters. It has also sought for implementation of a transparent and fair excise policy. A meeting would be soon held to sort out the issues about facilitating the Dutch investments in the state."

Large and Medium Industries Minister M.B. Patil said that the government of Karnataka looks forward to increased investmentsfrom the Netherlands across various industries like food processing, biotech, pharma, Innovation and R&D among others. There is also enough scope for investments in the tourism sector, he opined.

Patil informed the Dutch delegation that the government would set up KHIR City (Knowledge Health Innovation-Research City) on 1,000 acres near Bengaluru international airport.

Radovan Sikorsky, CFO, Board Member Heineken, expressed that being the largest MNC investor in Karnataka for marketing and brewing of premium beer under the Kingfisher (LON: KGF ) and Heineken brands, Heineken is looking for a fair and transparent regulatory regime that promotes the growth of the beer category in the State and offers premium products to its consumers.

Peter Lochbihler, Senior Director of Global Public Affairs, Booking.com, wanted to know Karnataka's views on the Indian government's efforts to draft a new Digital India Act, to introduce amendments to the Competition law and new liability on intermediary platforms across numerous sectors.

Arvind Vaishnav, Head of Philips Innovation Campus from Philips India Limited, stated that the company will be shifting the campus this year to a new campus on the upcoming IT corridor located en route to Kempegowda International Airport Bengaluru. Given this,Philips expects support from the government in ensuring the employees -- around 5000 -- to have easy access to BMTC's Volvo buses to and from the Embassy Business Hub in Yelahanka, he said.

Besides, he sought the government's intervention in extending industrial tariffs or a 20 per cent subsidy on the power expenses to remain competitive in its operations in Bengaluru. Additionally, Philips would like help from Karnataka to facilitate the ease of GST refunds. Philips would also require support in getting hassle-free import of used healthcare equipment, he explained.

Christiaan van de Koppel, Commercial Director Indian Sub-continent said that the KLM would be interested to hear the vision for further developing SEZs in Karnataka.

Chairman, Shell Group of Companies in India, said that there exist opportunities to create meaningful pathways for 2G Biofuels in India (and Karnataka in particular). He wanted to know about the support/incentives the government would extend for the same.

Maurice Geraets, Co-CEO NXP (NASDAQ: NXPI ) Netherlands, Country Manager NXP India, opined that there is a need to explore how can the Netherlands and Karnataka better team up R&D for Al, and automotive with academia and startups.

Marc Broskij, COO and Member of the Executive Board of KPMG Netherlands, Venkata Chunduru, Director and Head India Operations, Arcadis, Viswanath Pudukkod, CEO Randstad India, Dilip Rajan, COO of East-West Seed Group, Henri Oosthoek, Chairman and Advisory Board of Koppert, Harendra (Harry) Singh, Managing Director, Rijk Zwaan India, were among the Netherlands business delegation.

Chief Secretary to the government Vandita Sharma, Silva Kumar, ACS, Department of Industries and others were present.



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