India sees Kurdistan Region as a ‘strategic partner’, says trade association official
ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – The Kurdistan Region is considered by India as a “potential and strategic partner” in the Middle East due to its strategic location, an Indian trade association official told Kurdistan 24.
Kurdistan Region has “a lot of immense [business] potential,” Mayank Sharma, the deputy director of the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM), told Kurdistan 24 on the sidelines of the sixth Agro Pack exhibition in Erbil on Wednesday.
Read More: Erbil inaugurates sixth Agro Pack exhibition
The Indian official is part of a 48-member business delegation, mostly working in the food sector, that is currently taking part in the annual exhibition, where they interact with their Kurdish counterparts and customers to explore business opportunities in the agro-food sector, he said.
Iraq’s Kurdish region can benefit from Indian companies in various fields, including IT, pharmaceuticals, real estate, and education, the official said, adding numerous Indian companies are interested in investing in those fields in the Kurdistan Region.
Indian spices and Kurdistan Region
India is known universally as a “Land of Spices”, thanks to the varying climatic conditions across the country that provide ample conditions for various spice cultivation.
The Asian country is responsible for producing around 75 of the 109 varieties of spices listed by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO).
Indian companies can help their Kurdish counterparts in atomization of spice manufacturing, for which there are numerous opportunities, Sharma said.
The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) has been working “very hard” to provide a friendly ecosystem for foreign direct investors, including economic and social stabilities, he added.
“Kurdistan has developed a lot,” he said, adding the KRG had taken steps to transform the oil-based economy into a diversified one in recent years.
India inaugurated its diplomatic mission in Kurdistan Region in 2016. It “was a very strategic move which shows how serious India is towards enhancing [its] partnership with Kurdistan,” Sharma said.
Headquartered in New Delhi, ASSOCHAM is a non-governmental trade association that was formed in 1920 to “nurture” social, economic, and industrial growth, according to Sharma.
Being one of the oldest chambers of commerce in India, the association caters to over half of a million members, he added.
“ASSOCHAM is the voice of Indian industry,” Sharma said.
Additional reporting conducted by Kurdistan 24 reporter in Erbil Shayma Bayiz