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Mamata’s Five-Day London tour begins today: Industry captains exude confidence, but ‘don’t expect overnight change’

This will be Mamata’s maiden trip to London and her second foreign visit.

Written by Arshad Ali | Kolkata |
July 26, 2015 2:52:55 am
mamata banerjee, mamata banerjee london trip, mamata uk, mamata uk trip, mamata banerjee united kingdom, mamata banerjee uk trip, congress, bjp, babul supriyo, narendra modi, india news She had visited Singapore last year in August to showcase West Bengal as an investment destination.

As Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee leaves for the United Kingdom on Sunday on a five-day visit to seek investment for West Bengal, she will be accompanied by a team of more than 60 people, including industry captains, bureaucrats, at least three Trinamool Congress MPs, and police commissioner and mayor of Kolkata.

This will be Mamata’s maiden trip to London and her second foreign visit. She had visited Singapore last year in August to showcase West Bengal as an investment destination.

The delegation includes state finance and industry minister Amit Mitra, TMC MPs Derek O’Brien, Sugato Bose and Deepak Adhikari (Deb), Kolkata mayor Sovan Chatterjee, and Kolkata Police Commissioner Surajit Kar Purkayastha.

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ITC chairman Y C Deveshwar, RP-Sanjiv Goenka Group chairman Sanjiv Goenka and Ambuja Neotia Group chairman Harsh Neotia and Patton Group MD Sanjay Budhia would be members of the business delegation, officials said.

A 11-member team of people from cultural background, including vocalist Rashid Khan, percussionist Bickram Ghosh, and harmonium player Jyoti Goho would be accompanying Mamata.

While the industrialists would pay for their trip, those from the cultural world would be guests of the state.

Mamata’s trip to London was finalised following an invitation from British Prime Minister David Cameron. The tour will begin with a conference of British CEOs at the UK India Business Council meet on July 27, the officials said, adding the CM would meet the Duke of York, Prince Andrew at Buckingham Palace.

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Mamata would also meet British Employment Minister Priti Patel at the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office where several MoUs would be signed.

The industry captains said they are expecting positive outcome from the trip. “We are excited and confident about the trip, which would be an effort to build a bridge between Britain and Bengal. There are immense opportunities in the fields of education, infrastructure, healthcare and tourism that need to be showcased there,” said Sanjay Budhia, MD, Patton Group.

Neotia, too, said: “The trip will be a good opportunity to showcase the potential of Bengal to Eastern Europe which is home to a large Bengali diaspora. Investors there also need to know that it might be a lot simpler to invest here. Any such trip is about helping in branding the state”.

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Both, however, agreed that the positive effects of the trip would take some time to show. “It has a long time prospect. There will not be any overnight change. It is time for positioning ourselves as the world’s investment cycle turns,” Neotia said.

Budhia said the global economic scenario was not very favourable and thus there will not be any miraculous change. “There will have to be a sustained effort on our part to market the strength of the state,” he added.

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First published on: 26-07-2015 at 02:52:55 am

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