Kerala chief minister inaugurates Kochi branch of Doha Bank

Chief minister of the southern Indian state of Kerala Pinarayi Vijayan inaugurated the Kochi branch of Doha Bank at Lulu International Shopping Mall in Edapally.


As part of the inauguration, an investors conference on `Kerala-Qatar Investment Opportunities’ was also held, which witnessed participation of major investors and SMEs from Kerala, the GCC and Doha Bank officials.Doha Bank opens in Kerala

Dr R Seetharaman, CEO, Doha Bank, said:  “The Indian economy is expected to grow by 7.4 percent in 2016-17. The drop in oil price could ease the pressure on India’s current account deficit and fiscal deficit.  India’s consumer prices rose 6.07 percent from a year earlier in July 2016. India had cleared the Goods and Services Tax (GST) bill recently and expects it to be fully implemented by 1 April, 2017.”

He stated: “Kerala has aimed at an average growth rate of 9.5 percent in 2016-17. Its strategic location on the trans-national trade corridor, rich natural resources and simple and transparent procedures make the state favourably suited for investments in major sectors such as tourism, IT/ITeS, manufacturing and mining.”

The state tourism department is developing eco-friendly, rural tourism packages in the Kumarakom, Wayanad, Kovalam and Muziris heritage circuit. The electronic hub proposed at Kochi is a prestigious project of the Kerala government to promote electronic hardware manufacturing and assembling units and R&D centres and to support infrastructure for the same, he said.

Qatar economy

Seetharaman said: “Qatar’s economy expected to rise by 3.9 percent in 2016. Construction is expected to lead growth in 2016 and is projected to expand by 9.9 percent. GCC-India bilateral trade is close to USD 100 billion in 2015-16 out of which Qatar- India bilateral trade is close to USD 10 bn. Many Indian companies such as L&T, Tata Projects, Voltas and Punj Lloyd have been actively participating in various projects in Qatar.”

Speaking on GCC SMEs, he said: “In the UAE, SMEs contribute to over 60 percent of GDP and provide around 86 percent of employment in the private sector. SMEs can participate in Qatar’s non-hydrocarbon diversification. Kerala has identified various SME clusters for its development. Kerala’s SME and IT sectors can contribute to its economic growth better.”




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