In coordination with India’s assumption of the G20 Presidency on the 1st of December, the Indian embassy in Rome hosted the Italy-India business forum at the Roma Cavaliere Waldorf Astoria. India’s theme for its G20 year is One Earth-One Family-One Future to make it inclusive for the globe. The business forum was also special, given it was a month before the 75th anniversary of India-Italy diplomatic relations. Bilateral trade between the countries has increased by 54%, crossing $13 billion, said HE Dr. Neena Malhotra, Ambassador of India to Italy, welcoming the guests.
“India has recently become the 5th largest economy in the world, surpassing its former colonial master, the United Kingdom. In an aging world, India is a land of over 800 million young people. In 2025, one-third of Indians will be between the ages of 15-34. India is also home to 107 unicorns, valued at over $300 billion, and to over 18000 startups”, she added.
Italy was represented by HE Alessandra Schiavo, Minister Plenipotentiary, Director for the countries in Asia and Oceania at the Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation. HE Schiavo, echoing the growing warm relations between the two countries, mentioned the increased interest of Italian companies in India and a blossoming of Indian companies which were also looking to Italy as an investment destination.
The Indian business delegation was led by Sulabh Mathur, Additional Director for the FICCI, Federation of Indian Chambers for Commerce and Industry who underlined the traditional sector such as chemicals and machinery but also mentioned the recent growth in various other segments such as IT and telecom between the two countries. For Invest India, India’s National Investment Promotion and Facilitation Agency, Varda Taneja walked the audience through the timeline of India’s economic and infrastructural development. India’s economy has grown by 500% since 1995 and aims to be a $ 10 trillion economy by 2030, she said. India’s expected GDP growth in 2022 is 7.4% and estimated to be over 6% for the next two years, showing a quick recovery from the pandemic.
The institutional part also included a signature of an MoU between FICCI and Italian government-controlled Cassa Deposito e Presiti (CDP); Italy’s premier financial institution for financing infrastructure projects. After the initial introductions and inauguration, a B2B face to face networking event was organized for the delegation with Italian partners and companies interested in India by the Indian embassy in Rome.
The Italy India business Forum has stated the B2B interaction between the countries which hope to have an explosive growth in the years to come, also in light of strong relationships built during Italy’s G20 Presidency and Mario Draghi’s term as Prime Minister. The meeting between Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni and Narendra Modi at the sidelines of the G20 heads of state summit in Bali indicates both leaders intend to proceed with the same vigor continuing the growth that the relationship reached after Prime Minister Modi’s visit to Rome in October 2020.