Thimphu: Union Minister for Commerce and Industries, Piyush Goyal here on Friday called on the King of Bhutan, Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck and Prime Minister Lotay Tshering.
“The Minister today called on His Majesty The King of Bhutan, aside from a call-on the Prime Minister of Bhutan and a meeting with the Minister of Economic Affairs of Bhutan,” a statement from the Indian Embassy read.
“Had a fruitful interaction with His Excellency @PMBhutan, Dr. Lotay Tshering. We discussed steps to further deepen our economic & investment ties by nurturing a vibrant startup ecosystem in Bhutan,” tweeted Piyush Goyal.
Union Minister Piyush Goyal is in Bhutan as the head of a high-level business delegation in connection with Bhutan – India Start-Up Summit 2020.
“The high-level business delegation from India led by Vikram Kirloskar, President CII and including Kris Gopalakrishnan, Chairman CII; Chandrajit Banerjee, DG CII; and Ritesh Agarwal, Founder and CEO of OYO, among others joined the Minister during the calls-on/meetings to chart new pathways for the India Bhutan economic partnership,” according to the statement issued by Embassy of India in Bhutan.
Among the “concrete deliverables” that emerged as a consequence of the meetings, the Embassy said, “Based on the request of Bhutan, the Railway Board has commissioned a survey to establish the Mujnai (India) – Nyoenpaling (Bhutan) line that will provide a cross border rail link between India and Bhutan.”
“A team from Indian Railways is visiting Bhutan tomorrow to hold discussions with the State Mining Corporation of Bhutan on finalizing a MOU for export of Railway ballast from Bhutan to India. The CII has announced that it will mentor 30 Bhutanese start-ups in Indian incubation centers with a view to growing the entrepreneurial culture in Bhutan. They will also open their first South Asia Office in Bhutan shortly,” it added.
The two sides also discussed designation and notification of new transit customs stations at Jogighopa, Pandu and Agartala. Further, agreement on making the Land Customs Station at Nagarkatta as a permanent customs station was also discussed.
“The Minister also announced concrete outcomes for bilateral engagement in areas of training and capacity building: Government of India will be fully sponsoring training of 100 Bhutanese trainers and youth on Entrepreneurship at the Entrepreneurship Development Institute of India, Gandhinagar, Gujarat,” the Embassy said.
A total of 30 Bhutanese entrepreneurs and start-ups will undergo hands-on training at the Indian Institute of Packaging, Delhi sponsored by the Government of India.
Besides, India will commission a feasibility study for setting up an Entrepreneurship Development Institute in Bhutan.
According to the statement, the Programme on Saturday for this first of its kind Start-Up Summit in Bhutan, will include an Inaugural Session and five break-away sessions: New India; Startup Ecosystem – The Indian experience; Fostering Entrepreneurship in Information Technology and other emerging technologies; Investment opportunities in Bhutan; and Way Forward, where prominent business personalities, think tanks and academics will ideate, debate and collaborate on the identified themes, with an objective to forge stronger future business engagement across all sectors, scales and spectrum of the Indo-Bhutan economic partnership.
“Minister Piyush Goyal will deliver the keynote address at the inaugural session of the Summit, and also inaugurate an exhibition of 30 Start-Ups from India and Bhutan together with the Prime Minister of Bhutan. This will be followed by an Interactive Round Table meeting featuring top captains of Bhutanese and Indian industry chaired by the Minister,” the statement read.