The 67th annual session of Hindustan Chamber of Commerce elected Hasmukhlal D Vora, a pharmaceutical industry veteran with over 45 years of experience, as President. The chief guest of the function, Dr E M Sudarsana Nachiappan, Union Minister of State for Commerce and Industry, mentioned that the smaller Asia Pacific countries await India’s pro-active trade policies towards them. “The road link between India and Bangkok will help in the ‘Look East Policy,’ to enhance trade.”
The outgoing president, R Subramanian, stressed on the role of regional chambers which need to be regional in touch but national in reach. He requested the government to increase domestic savings and improve the share of manufacturing sector in GDP as it provides the necessary balance between growth and inflation. In her address, Jenifer A McIntyre, Consul General, Consulate General of USA, Chennai, pointed to trade between India and USA poised to cross the $ 100 billion mark soon. India is the 11th largest trading partner with the US and the 24th largest FDI investor in US.
Rafeeque Ahmed, Chairman, Farida Group, said that the environment to do business is not favourable: “ease of doing business within India should be ranked and corrective measures should be taken to make it conducive,” cautioned Ahmed. R Thyagarajan, Founder Chairman, Shriram Group of companies stated: “We are still to achieve economic freedom. Apart from influencing government, chambers should communicate with people about the benefits of an enterprise and also chambers should focus on facilitating ease of doing business.”