At a time when Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) from a majority of the 15 “partner countries” of Vibrant Gujarat Summit is on decline, the event will bring together 27 global funds for an “exclusive, close-door interaction” with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, RBI Governor and select top eight Indian industrialists.
The “global investors round table” will be held on January 18, the inaugural day of the three-day summit.
“Uday Kotak will be part of the event. The rest of the industrialists are in the process of being confirmed,” said Arvind Agarwal, Additional Chief Secretary (Revenue), told The Indian Express about the event which is being held for the first time with the joint efforts of Government of India, Gujarat Government and NIIF (National Investment and Infrastructure Fund). The roundtable will see participation of Jin Liqun, the president of Beijing-headquartered Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB); Gordon Fyfe, CEO of Canada-based British Columbia Investment Management Corporation; Ritu Arora, CEO of Allianz Investment Management Singapore; Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem, group chairman & CEO of DP World; Norihiro Takahashi, president of Japan-based Government Pension Investment Fund, Philippe Le Hourerou, CEO of Washington-headquartered International Finance Corporation (IFC); Daniel Bircher, CEO of Zurich Airport Group; among others.
“They have trillion dollars of funds and keep hunting for investment opportunities and good projects… Our aim is to brief them about the economic changes that have happened in the country in the last four years and the opportunities for investments that have arisen,” Agrawal said.
The event holds significance after two of the country’s top six FDI contributors — the UK and the US — declined to partner the summit and bring ministerial delegations to the event.
While FDI inflows from both the UK and US have declined by 44% and 17%, respectively, between 2016 and 2017, the FDI inflows to India from “partner countries” of the summit like Japan, UAE, Australia, Poland, Norway, Denmark and Czech Republic have also slipped substantially. Morocco has not made any investments in India during the last two-and-half years, RBI data revealed.
The event which will ideally involve “match-making” between Indian corporates and foreign investors, as reported by The Indian Express in May 2018, comes at a time when the FDI inflow into Gujarat has also declined by 40%. During 2016-17, Gujarat received record Rs 22,610 crore of FDI equity inflows. However, it dipped to Rs 13,457 crore at the end of 2017-18. The RBI figures show that till June 2018, Gujarat has received about Rs 2,786 crore FDI investment.