Council Delegation Forges New Ties with India

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Expanding and deepening economic connections between California, the Bay Area-Silicon Valley and India was the focus of a weeklong (Jan. 12-18) delegation visit the Bay Area Council led to New Dehli with Lt. Gov. Eleni Kounalakis and other top business, government and academic leaders. Trade, tourism and climate change were among the key topics. The trip provided an opportunity to build upon the longstanding relationship between California and India on future collaborations. Those connections were the focus of an in-depth report by the Bay Area Council Economic Institute—The Bay Area-Silicon Valley and India: Convergence and Alignment in the Innovation Age—that Council CEO Jim Wunderman and Kounalakis presented to US Ambassador to India Ken Juster. Delegates also me with officials from the Ministries of Commerce and Science & Technology, Invest India, and climate leaders from Niti Aayog, the policy think tank of the Indian government that focuses on achieving sustainable development goals.

Delegate John Cumbers, Founder of SynBioBeta, penned anexcellent article for Forbes on the key takeaways from the trip.

Major Indian corporations, including The Mahindra Group, ReNew Power, Infosys, Jetline Group of Companies and Tata, participated in roundtable meetings and panel discussions. The Council delegates received briefings from industry groups NASSCOM, CII, Indian Venture Capital Association and USIBC. Visit California and the CA Film Council, also in New Delhi, hosted an Indian reception and dinner with traditional dancers. United Airlines sponsored the trip to highlight its new nonstop flight from SFO to DEL, a true gamechanger in US-India tourism and business travel.  While in India, Kounalakis also participated in the Raisina Dialogue, an annual geo-political and geo-economic summit of international leaders. Read here for more on the Lt. Governor’s remarks.

The Council is extremely excited about the foundation this trip provided for increasing collaboration and partnership with our friends in India.

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