The Third Convention of the International Business Linkage Forum (IBLF) was held on Sunday, 27 th February 2005 at Crowne Plaza, Dubai. It was attended by delegates and leading businessmen from all member countries. Bankers and Investors from UAE, Russia, India, Benin, Senegal, China, Hong Kong, Togo, South Korea etc. Eminent speakers and experts addressed the convention. The theme was trade, finance and infrastructure. During one to one on 28th February, various business projects and proposals were discussed and taken forward.
The convention commenced with inaugural and welcome address to the delegates by IBLF Executive Director, Mr. Sandeep Joshi in which he summarized the activities and progress made by IBLF since its last meetings in Beijing (2003) and Mumbai (2004). He further added that, in today’s expansive and growing global market the IBLF forum had developed as a business platform to discuss trade and investment opportunities, to promote joint ventures, to seek and reach out to newer markets through collaborations between its members. He mentioned that the forum was patronized by the Moscow Region Administration, Foreign Investments Agency of Russian Federation, Ministry of Industries / Foreign Affairs Belarus and Ministry of Industry, Trade and Employment Promotion, Republic of Benin. They are using the forum platform to enhance their trade and commercial relations.
President of the Dubai Chapter of IBLF, Chairman of Bagash Trading, Mr. Ali Bagash, presented to the delegates, Dubai as and future of economies not only in the Middle East region but also in the world. He elaborated on how Dubai has become an International trade and finance hub and is a gateway to the most thriving capital markets in the world.
Founder Chairman of IBLF and Managing Director of Podar Enterprises, Mr. Rajiv Podar, addressed the delegates on the theme of globalization and emergence of new markets which had brought ample growth opportunities for business. His emphasis was on how the US centered uni-polar world economy was projected for change with emerging economies of China and India. Mr. Podar highlighted the liberalization of Indian economy with new initiatives by government regarding foreign direct investment in various sectors. He concluded with hope that the forum members would take the advantage of new globalization trends.
Mr. U. Balasubramaniam, CEO, Dubai Sports City presented a picture of the facilities being planned for this futuristic project with self contained residential complexes. It will be a complex running into several Billion Dihrams, and will house all Sports facilities. Dr. Juma Al Matrooshi, Director, Operations of the Dubai Airport Free Zone Authority and Director of Dubai Silicon Oasis highlighted the lucrative investment opportunities in Dubai Free Zone with excellent infrastructure and finance. Dr. Juma assured the delegates his full support in case of their interest to start operations in DAFZA.
Mr. Rakesh Wahi, Founder Member of IBLF and MD of Capital Management Advisors Chaired the second session of the convention. Mr. Sergey Andrev, Member of St. Petersburg legislative Assembly and Chairman of the Permanent Commission on Education, Culture & Science for focused on the investment projects concerning real estate development in St. Petersburg. Mr. Tall, Executive Director of ECOWAS Bank for Investment and Development spoke of economic development projects in West African sub region. He explained the objectives of the EBID group, its capital structure and dwelt on opportunities for enterprises to access the market in their region of 15 counties. He invited investors for equity participation in their bank and to participate in programmes relating to energy, basic infrastructure, telecommunications and transport.
Mr. Azmat Taufique, Senior Regional Manager and Head of Middle Eastern Region of International Finance Corporation (IFC) commended the forum for acting as a platform for strengthening south-south co-operation. He elaborated on the role of IFC, which is the private sector development arm of the World Bank group. Its Dubai Office was set up to manage the development and growth of IFC’s investment, technical assistance and advisor to prospective businesses in Middle East Region.
Mr. P. N. Murlidharan, a Consultant and Ex-Director of Deloittes addressed the gathering on the mortgage Finance business.
The Third session dealt with concrete proposals and opportunities. Mr. Ivanchenko, General Director of Foreign Investment Agency of Russian Federation spoke on the various investment opportunities in Russia. He invited the members of his delegation to give presentations of specific proposals. Mr. Gregory Papoyan discussed new methods of mining operations in oil, gas and water sectors. He also briefed on geological forecasting through use of satellite imagery. Mr. Sergey Belkin, General Director of Innovation Corporation Biodefence also addressed the delegates.
Ms. Mona Shah of Fourth Dimension Trade India Ltd. gave a presentation on construction and construction materials and opportunities there in. Mr. Lawrence Li of Fubang Development (HK) Ltd. spoke on increasing business opportunities in China and Hong Kong. He emphasized his need to buy Iron Ore, Cotton Yarns for China and sell Met Coke. Mr. Mike Vlasov International Director of General Components briefed delegates on the opportunities in telecom equipments of the company. Mr. Harvansh Chawala, Managing Partner of KR Chawala & Co., gave a presentation on the legal services provided to International Clients for executing of commercial transactions. Mr. Ranjeet Prakash discussed the new legislation for Foreign Direct Investment in the real estate sector brought out by the Indian Govt. He said that Indian economy was opening up and embracing WTO norms and globally determined rules of trade and commerce.
The presentations and speeches delivered by the experts’ generated the tempo and interest and invited questions from the delegates.
Mr. Ali Bagash proposed a vote of thanks to all speakers and delegates to the convention.
He summed up with saying several strategic initiatives were taken with focus on developing and strengthening the business opportunities. It is hoped that the convention would have opened new vistas and new ventures for enhancing business interests of the Forum members. It was indeed a unique networking opportunity for the participants.